WOOMERA, Australia (AP) _ About a dozen asylum seekers including one child scaled two razor wire-topped fences Friday to escape from an Outback detention center as hundreds of protesters rioted outside.

Some of the refugees appeared to be bleeding after scrambling over the chain-link fences surrounding the Woomera Detention Center in central Australia.

Protesters immediately put new clothes on the refugees and whisked them away from police, who then began scuffling with demonstrators outside the camp.

Ten police on horseback rode into the crowd in an attempt to quell the escalating violence.

The camp has often been the scene of protests and hunger strikes by refugees held inside under Australia's policy of detaining all asylum seekers who arrive in the country illegally.