19 dead after riot in Somalia prison where al-Shabab members are held

Violence started when an inmate grabbed an officer’s gun and went on shooting spree

Abdi Guled
Tuesday 11 August 2020 15:00
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A general view shows the Mogadishu central cell in Mogadishu, Somalia
A general view shows the Mogadishu central cell in Mogadishu, Somalia

A Somali police officer says at least 19 people were killed during a riot in the central prison in Somalia’s capital on Monday evening.

Abdiqani Mohamed Qalaf, spokesman for the police force in charge of prisons, told reporters the dead included 15 inmates and four guards. He said the situation is back to normal, but he gave no details.

General Mahad Abdirahman, commander of the custodial corps, told reporters that the violence started when an inmate grabbed an officer’s gun and went on a shooting spree.

In the chaos, other inmates, including some sentenced on terrorism charges, recovered guns from fallen guards.

The prison holds some members of the al-Qaida-linked extremist group al-Shabab.

It was the first such riot at the prison in recent memory.

Associated Press

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