Insurgents tunnel into Kandahar jail, free more than 500

April 25, 2011 07:30

KANDAHAR - Insurgents tunneled into the main jail in Afghanistan's restive Kandahar province and freed hundreds of prisoners, including many commanders, a provincial government official said on Monday.

"We have the report that hundreds of Taliban managed to escape from the prison," the provincial governor's spokesman Zalmay Ayoubi told Reuters. A spokesman for the NATO-led International Security Assistance force could not immediately confirm the report.

The Taliban said in a statement that 541 prisoners had escaped through an extensive tunnel that took months to construct.

Taliban insurgents blew open the gate of the same prison in 2008, allowing hundreds of prisoners including suspected militants to escape, including some 400 insurgent inmates.

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