URIBANA - A prison riot in southwestern Venezuela killed 61 people, a hospital official said on Sunday, although the government has refused to give an official death toll in the bloody standoff that highlighted chaos in the country's jails.
The violence took place on Friday at the Uribana jail near the city of Barquisimeto. Relatives who gathered outside the jail fumed at the lack of information from authorities who have started transferring prisoners to other facilities but have not confirmed how many were killed.
The rioting took place at a time when cancer-stricken President Hugo Chavez remains in Cuba receiving treatment and with Vice President Nicolas Maduro - the notional head of state - visiting the socialist leader in Havana and then traveling to a summit in Chile.
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