Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Dramatic Prison Breaks Trending as 250 Escape from Pakistan Jail

Hundreds of prisoners escape following similar episodes in Libya and Iraq

Indicating a clear strategic trend, hundreds of prisoners ran free following a prison break from a Pakistan jail late Monday night.

According to reports, one large bomb detonated outside Central Prison in the town of Dera Ismail Khan at roughly 11:30 PM, blowing a hole in the jail's walls. Then, as the Guardian reports, "around 70 gunmen, many dressed in police uniforms, then rushed through the gaps, throwing grenades and firing rocket-propelled grenades, killing six policemen and opening cells to free around 250 prisoners."

Reportedly the escapees include 24 "wanted terrorists."

The jail break follows on the heels of two similar episodes.

On Saturday, over 1000 prisoners escaped from a prison in Benghazi, Libya—though conflicting reports attribute the escape to either an attack from the outside or violence among military police spiraling into a fire and riot within.

Last Tuesday, a coordinated assault on both Iraq's Taji and Abu Ghraib prisons resulted in the freeing of hundreds of prisoners. Planned for months, the Iraq breaks involved multiple car bombs and were carried out by gunmen from the outside with help from a number of guards on the inside.

Following Monday's assault, a spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the incident. They've also claimed responsibility for the two breaks earlier this week, the Guardian adds.

Reportedly, the Taliban were helped by security insiders and, following the incident, an inquiry found there were "far fewer guards on duty than there should have been and those who were there lacked sufficient ammunition."

Describing the Pakistan incident as "extremely calculated," Al Jazeera correspondent Imtiaz Tyab, reporting from Islamabad, said that the infiltrators "were using loudspeakers and calling the individual names of inmates to come out of the badly damaged prison."

Ahead of the prison break, officials received a letter threatening such action, but according to the head of the local prison department Khalid Abbas, "they didn't expect it so soon."

_____________________


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.
We need your help.

Support progressive journalism.

Common Dreams is not your average news site. We don't survive on clicks or advertising dollars. We rely entirely on your support. And without it, our independent progressive journalism simply wouldn’t exist. Every gift of every amount matters.

Join the fight and support our common dreams today.

Rich Nations' Vaccine Pledge Includes Just 613 Million New Doses—Well Short of Promised 1 Billion

"A single factory could produce this number in a year if you waived patents."

Jake Johnson, staff writer ·


Ocasio-Cortez Says 'Elephant in the Room' Is Senate Democrats Blocking Their Own Party's Agenda

"The argument that we need to make here," the New York Democrat said of bipartisanship's dead end, "is that it's worth going it alone if we can do more for working people in this country."

Jon Queally, staff writer ·


On Climate and Covid-19 Emergencies, G7 Judged a 'Colossal Failure' for All the World to See

"Never in the history of the G7 has there been a bigger gap between their actions and the needs of the world. In the face of these challenges the G7 have chosen to cook the books on vaccines and continue to cook the planet."

Jon Queally, staff writer ·


NYC Mayoral Candidate Eric Adams Rebuked for 'Dangerous' 400-Students-to-1-Teacher Theory

"Defunding schools to the point that we have a 400:1 student-to-teacher ratio so we can bankroll another huge expansion in an already-multibillion dollar police budget," said Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, "is how you build a school-to-prison pipeline."

Jon Queally, staff writer ·


Lack of Patent Waiver Would Add Over $70 Billion to Cost of Vaccinating World: Oxfam

Most of that money, said a spokesperson for the group, "will go directly into the pockets" of Big Pharma shareholders.

Jon Queally, staff writer ·