Highlights

  • Islamist rebel raid jail in Nigeria
  • Rebels attacked jails with explosives
  • 64 suspects of Boko Haram flee

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Nearly 900 prisoners escape after Nigeria jail raid

The Islamic extremist rebels who attacked the prison have waged an insurgency in the country’s northeast for over a decade.

Nearly 900 inmates escaped in a jailbreak in Abuja, Nigeria's capital city, officials said Wednesday, blaming the attack on Islamic extremist rebels.

At least 443 of the 879 escapees are still missing, Umar Abubakar, a spokesman for the Nigerian Correctional Service said, while hundreds of others have either been recaptured or turned themselves in at police stations.

The “very determined” rebels attacked the Kuje maximum prison in Abuja on Tuesday night with “very high-grade explosives,” killing one guard on duty.

Explosions and gunfire were heard at about 10 p.m. in the Kuje area when the attackers arrived and forced their way into the prison through a hole created by the blasts.

The Islamic extremist rebels who attacked the prison have waged an insurgency in the country’s northeast for over a decade.

Their attack on the detention facility freed many of their members who are inmates, prison officials said.

The Kuje maximum security prison had nearly 1,000 inmates including 64 suspects of the Boko Haram extremist group all of whom have escaped.

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