16 Guards Taken Hostage in Second Turkish Prison Revolt
Inmates demanding amnesty have taken 16 prison guards hostage in a revolt in an Istanbul jail, Anatolia news agency reported Tuesday.
The unrest late Monday in Bayrampasa prison, on Istanbul's European side, followed a riot in a prison in the southern city of Adana, where prisoners took 21 guards hostage in protest against the planned transfer of fellow inmates to other jails and continued to hold them on Tuesday.
The prisoners in Bayrampasa jail set fire in their compounds and hung posters reading "We want amnesty" from the roof of the building, Anatolia reported.
A prosecutor and a local security chief, who began talks with the inmates after the guards were taken hostage, continued to negotiate with them on Tuesday after some nine hours of unsuccessful endeavors, Anatolia said.
Authorities stepped up security around the jail, deploying riot teams and armored vehicles, according to the agency.
Revolts and hostage-taking are commonplace in Turkey's unruly jails, prompting the government to outline a reform plan under which the current wards housing up to 60 inmates will be replaced with cells for at most three people.
The reform has triggered widespread protests from prisoners' families and human rights groups on the grounds that the new system will lead to further alienation among the inmates – ANKARA (AFP)
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