Afghan Taliban raid prison, release hundreds of inmates

Afghan Taliban militants raid government prison in Ghazni and free hundreds of prisoners

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers stand over the body of a Taliban militant outside a prison in Ghazni, Afghanistan, September 14, 2015.

Taliban militants broke into a government prison in the central city of Ghazni, Afghanistan, early on Monday, killing police officers and letting hundreds of prisoners go free, according to reports by police.

The bodies of two men were found who appeared to have been suicide bombers along with a blown-up car that probably was used in order to destroy the main entrance of the jail, a Reuters correspondent at the scene reported.

Almost all of the prisoners appeared to have broken out from their jail cells, the reporter added.

Some armed men and three suicide bombers invaded the prison at 2 am (2200 GMT Sunday) and appeared to have freed 400 prisoners, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said.

The three bombers were killed, Mujahid added.

"Forty Afghan security forces and prison guards were killed in the prison break and important military mujahideen officials have been freed," he stated.

On the other hand, deputy governor of Ghazni, Mohammed Ali Ahmadi, stated that 352 prisoners had escaped, 150 of whom were Taliban militants.

Ahmadi went on to say that seven Taliban militants and four members of the Afghan security forces were killed during the raid in Ghazni, located about 120 kilometre southwest of Afghanistan's capital, Kabul.

However, security officials refused to confirm how many prisoners were originally in the jail. 

According to Reuters afghani officials said “Seven Taliban and four members of the Afghan security forces were killed in the attack. Seven police were injured.”

One security official reported that the attackers were dressed in the uniforms of the Afghan security forces.

The Taliban is known for exaggerating the death tolls from its attacks on government officials and buildings and foreign targets.

TRTWorld and agencies