On Monday (05.05.2021), the Nigerian Prisons Authority said, more than 1,800 prisoners escaped from a prison in Imo State, southeast Nigeria, following an attack by militants.
“Unidentified gunmen attacked Owerri prison and released 1844 detainees by force,” Prison Services spokesman Francis Inupure said in a statement.
Authorities said the attackers used machine guns and explosives in a series of coordinated attacks, and also stormed other buildings of the police and army.
He added: “Eyewitnesses said that they saw a large number of gunmen on board trucks, and immediately attacked the prison staff before blowing up the front door.”
For his part, Imo Prisons Media Officer James Madugba confirmed the attack and called on residents to “continue to practice their work,” noting that “the situation is under control.”
Imo is located in the former independence area of Biafra, where the Indigenous Movement of Biafra (IPOB) maintains its separatist ambition.
Recent videos show dozens, even hundreds, of fighters training. However, the group refused any connection to this attack, according to the French news agency.
AFP / DPA / AP / RR