Over 200 inmates escape from Uganda prison with guns

Over 200 inmates escape from Uganda prison with guns

Over 200 inmates escape from Uganda prison with guns and other explosives.

219 prisoners have escaped a Ugandan jail after overpowering their guards.

Some of them escaped with at least 15 guns, but two were killed after security forces launched an operation to recapture them, a military spokeswoman said.

The inmates escaped late on Wednesday from jail in Karamoja, a remote, semi-arid northeastern region, said the spokeswoman, Brigadier Flavia Byekwaso.

Before fleeing, they broke into the prison armory and stole 15 AK-47 rifles, 20 magazines and other ammunition.

“It’s a mass escape … these were hard-core criminals,” she said, adding they included murderers, robbers and rapists.

The fact they had some weapons and a head-start of hours of darkness made the search more difficult, Byekwaso said.

“They’ve had a whole night to disperse and hide; it complicates our efforts, but we shall get them,” she said.

It was Uganda’s third prisoner escape since the outbreak of the coronavirus in March as fears of contracting the virus in cramped jails spurred inmates’ efforts to break out.

At least three cases of the coronavirus have been reported in Ugandan jails.

At least three prisoners were killed and six others injured after riots occurred Saturday,March 22, 2020 afternoon in the northwestern Ugandan district of Arua, prison authorities said.

The total number of inmates in Uganda rose 10% to 65,000 in the five months to August, according to the prisons service, a surge attributed to a large number of people apprehended for violations of various anti-coronavirus measures like curfews and travel restrictions.