Egypt: Inmates clash with guards, escape jails

Security officials: Several killed, Muslim terrorists among those running free; Report says Mubarak fled to Sharm e-Sheikh home.

January 30, 2011 12:21
2 minute read.
Egyptian protesters in Cairo with a motorcycle

Egyptian protesters on mortcycle 311. (photo credit: MELANIE LIDMAN)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Egyptian security officials said Sunday that thousands of inmates have escaped prisons across Egypt, including one that housed Muslim terrorists northwest of Cairo.

The developments add to the chaos engulfing Egypt as anti-government protests continue. The officials said the prisoners escaped overnight from at least four jails after starting fires and clashing with guards.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

Looting engulfs Cairo, other Egyptian cities
Thousands of Egyptian protesters defy curfew in Cairo
Editorial: A region in ferment
Israel keeps diplomats in Egypt, but pulls out dependents

They said that several inmates were killed and wounded during the escape, but gave no specific figures. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to share the information with the media.

Residents have formed neighborhood protection groups, armed with firearms, sticks and clubs to ward off looting gangs roaming Cairo and other cities.

Click here for full Jpost coverage of unrest in Egypt

Egyptian security forces were on high alert Sunday after Cairo was engulfed in chaos overnight Saturday. There was rampant looting, and lawlessness spread fast. Residents of affluent neighborhoods were boarding up their homes against gangs of thugs roaming the streets with knives and sticks, and gunfire was heard in some neighborhoods.

The death toll from five days of protests rose sharply since Friday to around 70 with over 2,000 people reportedly injured.

British newspaper The Daily Telegraph reported Saturday that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has fled Cairo and was hiding in his Sharm e-Sheikh winter home.

According to the report, workers in the resort said they saw Mubarak's entourage arrive on Wednesday, however no officials could confirm the report.

Also on Sunday, a Gaza Palestinian border official said Egypt has closed its border with the Hamas-ruled territory amid the raging turmoil in Egypt.

Ghazi Hamad said he expected the closure to last several days.

The border terminal at Rafah had been rescheduled to open Sunday after a routine, two-day weekend closure. About 400 to 600 Palestinians cross through the terminal daily for medical treatment, study and family visits.

Gaza reports also said three Palestinians who were imprisoned in Egypt had escaped during the upheaval and had returned to the coastal territory through smuggling tunnels.

Hamas officials said group leaders have postponed a trip through Egypt to Syria, where they were to discuss a new proposal to free a long-held Israeli soldier.

Melanie Lidman contributed to this report

Related Content

Anti-government protesters demonstrate on a street in central Ankara
June 16, 2013
Thousands take to streets of Istanbul, defy Erdogan