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Prison staff may be involved in jailbreak: Ghalib

Prison staff may be involved in jailbreak: Ghalib

Apr 26, 2011 - 19:59

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): The escape of inmates from the Kandahar Central Jail has raised disturbing questions, indicating prison staff's complicity, Minister of Justice Habibullah Ghalib said on Tuesday.

In the wee hours of Monday, 475 prisoners escaped from the mail jail in the southern province through a 360-metre tunnel dug by militants. All escapees are political prisoners, according to the Kandahar governor.

A statement from President Hamid Karzai's office said Ghalib had sent a report on the jailbreak to the Presidential Palace.

The minister expressed regrets over the incident, and said digging such a tunnel required time and vehicles. The statement quoted Ghalib as saying: "The house from where the tunnel was dug was checked by police two and half months ago."

A Talibaninfo-icon spokesman, Qari Yousaf Ahmadi, had said that work on the underground passage was launched five months ago.

Ghalib believed the escapees must have been whisked out of the city in a large convoy. "How could the whole process go unnoticed by Afghan and foreign forces stationed in the province?" Ghalib asked.

That all inmates, who were locked in separate cells, fled through the tunnel into a single room of the house indicated the involvement of jail officials, he said.

Officials from interior and defence ministries, the National Directorate of Security and Department of Prisons were in Kandahar to file a detailed report on the incident, Ghalib said.


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