16 dead, 13 wounded in Venezuela prison melee | india | Hindustan Times
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16 dead, 13 wounded in Venezuela prison melee

india Updated: Jan 03, 2007 04:43 IST
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At least 16 people were killed and 13 others wounded when violent clashes erupted between warring factions at a prison southwest of Caracas, Venezuela's justice ministry has said.

"It began (Monday) with a fight between prisoners from two cell blocks, who were battling for control of the facility," director of prisons Fanny Marquez said in a statement on Tuesday.

Marquez declined to elaborate on what caused the deaths or what types of weapons were used, but she said that guards at the Uribana prison in Lara state have since been able to "fully take control" of the situation.

National Guard troops were also called to help maintain order at the prison, according to Globovision television.

At least 309 people died in 32 Venezuelan prisons during the first nine months of 2006, according to the private organisation Prison Observatory.