‘Egyptian prison guards killed inmates during uprising leading to Mubarak’s resignation’

February 19th, 2011 - 4:36 pm ICT by ANI  

Cairo, Feb 19 (ANI): Egyptian prison guards had reportedly killed scores of prisoners in an apparent attempt to stop them from fleeing as law and order collapsed during the days of political unrest in the country that eventually led to the resignation of the ousted President Hosni Mubarak.

The Telegraph quoted one of the inmates as saying, from inside his cell, that 153 men werer killed.

He also said that when many inmates were rejoicing after Mubarak’s resignation, a man standing next to him was shot dead by the guards.

“We started to cheer and shout. This man was standing here and was just shot through the eye. He died immediately. While we were carrying his body to the gates of the prison, the guards shot us again. They even shot the body again,” the prisoner said.

Human rights groups have estimated the number of dead at al-Qata at 70. The prosecutor general of the area west of Cairo where the prison is located is said to have seen 23 bodies in the local morgue on one day alone, the paper said.

Inmates at some prisons were left to escape, with reports saying that at least 11 Hizbollah and Hamas militants had fled. Some of them reportedly had received a hero’s welcome in Gaza and Lebanon.

The disturbances occurred at Al-Qata when inmates, mostly long-term prisoners on criminal charges, also demanded freedom. It took a bad turn when General Mohammed al-Batran, a prisons inspector who was negotiating with them, was shout dead by one of his own men. Other guards then joined him and killed a prisoner who tried to help the general.

According to inmates and human rights workers, most of the deaths had occurred in the following 24 hours.

They also claimed that prisoners were partially deprived of food and water for five days, and people who sought water were gunned down. (ANI)

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