Taliban attack Pak prison free 250 inmates

By: admin
Updated: 30 Jul 2013 01:44 AM


Peshawar: Heavily-armed Taliban militants
disguised as policemen attacked a high-security prison in northwest
Pakistan, freeing nearly 250 militants and killing 14 people after a
fierce gunfight with security forces.

The gunmen launched their
attack around midnight with a series of heavy explosions before firing
rocket propelled grenades and machine guns, a senior police official said.


During
the attack on Central Prison in Dera Ismail Khan of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
province bordering the restive South Waziristan agency, the militants
killed six policemen, six Shia prisoners and two private security guards,
he said.

"Five more policemen and two civilian were injured in
the attack," said deputy commissioner Amir Khattak.

Officials
said that at least 247 prisoners were missing after the attack and a
search for the fugitives continued who were suspected to be taken away by
the militants.

Tehrik e Taliban Pakistan has claimed
responsibility for the attack, saying that over 100 militants, including
several suicide bombers, participated in the massive jail break.

"We
lost two of our men in the fight," Taliban spokesman Shahidullah Shahid
said, adding that the militants have achieved their targets and their
operation was successful.

The jail holds up to 5,000 prisoners
including about 250 militants and high-profile rebels involved in attacks
on security forces and sectarian killings.

Shaukat Yousafzai,
spokesman for the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provincial government, said, "the
army has been called in to counter the militant attack." However,
Yousafzai said he has no information of the prisoners' escape.

Advisor
to Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa Chief Minister for Jail Malik Qasim said the
militants under the guise of police uniform first blown up the main
transmission, plunging the entire area in to darkness and then launched
massive attack with rockets and hand grenade.

Residents in Dera
Ismail Khan heard over 20 explosions near the prison. A curfew was imposed
in the city as a search operation continued to apprehend the escaped
fugitives.

In April 2012, Taliban militants armed with automatic
weapons and rocket-propelled grenades battled their way into a prison in
the city of Bannu in northwest Pakistan, freeing close to 400 prisoners,
including at least 20 described by police as "very dangerous" insurgents.





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