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Security raid on Jessore jail leaves five dead, 400 injured

December 23, 1996

DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) _ Security forces fired guns and tear gas to quell a weeklong revolt by prisoners, leaving five people dead and more than 400 injured, a newspaper reporter said Sunday.

Officials of the Jessore Central Jail refused to confirm the figures after security forces battled the prisoners, who fought back with crude spears, bows and arrows and hurled fiery chilly powder at police.

Farazi Azmal Hossain, a reporter of the Ittefaq newspaper, said security forces also doused the prisoners with hot water.

Four prisoners and one policemen were killed and at least 400 prisoners were hurt in the clashes, he said. The prisoners were later locked up in their cells.

``We achieved our objective with the least possible bloodshed,″ said police officer Ali Imam Choudhury, who led the security raid.

Saturday night some of the prisoners hanged one of their colleagues, suspecting him to be a police informer, Choudhury said.

The government frequently releases thousands of prisoners on independence day. The prisoners in Jessore began the revolt after none of them was released on independence day last Monday.

Update hourly