12 people killed, 253 inmates escaped in NW Pakistan jail attack

ISLAMABAD. July 30. KAZINFORM At least 12 people were killed, 16 others injured and 253 inmates escaped when over 100 heavily armed militants attacked the central jail in Pakistan's northwest city of Dera Ismail Khan, local officials said Tuesday.

Dera Ismail Khan city administration official Mushtaq Jadoon said that the Taliban militants entered the city at about 11:22 p. m. Monday evening on buses and motorbikes, and attacked the jail holding 5,000 inmates, including about 250 prisoners from banned outfits.

The attackers entered inside the building after knocking down the outer wall of the jail by hand grenades. Propelling rockets at the police inside the jail, they entered the prisoners' barracks and released their 253 imprisoned accomplices, including four women, said the official.

The attackers were wearing police uniforms and they cut off the main electricity supply line of the city, which resulted in complete blackout and enabled them to successfully carry out the attack, he added.

The escaped prisoners include 30 high-profile militants who were involved in terrorist attacks across the country, said the official.

The killed people include four policemen, four inmates and four civilians, while the injured include seven policemen and nine civilians, Xinhua reports.

The injured were shifted to District Hospital Dera Ismail Khan for treatment.

Police said they had arrested six on-the-run inmates at the outskirts of the city.

The militants stayed inside the jail for two hours and carried out around 25 explosions to fight against some 200 on-duty policemen.

Senior city administration official Khan Amir Khattak said that they called in army contingent to control the situation and imposed curfew in the city.

Pakistan Taliban, or Tehrik-Taliban-Pakistan, claimed responsibility for the attack, saying that they sent 100 militants including suicide bombers to attack the jail, adding that they successfully released over 300 inmates from the jail.

This was not the first time that militants have attacked a jail in the country's northwest province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Earlier in April 2012, over 400 prisoners escaped after a Taliban attack against a jail in the province's Bannu area.

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