SANTO DOMINGO (Reuters) - At least four prisoners were killed and several others wounded by gunfire after an attempted mass escape at a prison in the southern Dominican Republic, officials said on Friday.
Guards opened fire on inmates at the Najayo jail in San Cristobal, about 22 miles (35 km) south of Santo Domingo, after they began rioting and attempted to escape, according to law enforcement and prison officials in the Caribbean nation.
At least 10 inmates escaped prison officials said, while the injured were rushed to a local hospital, some in serious condition, according to a hospital source who did not specify the number of people being treated.
Attorney General Francisco Domínguez Brito visited the scene where relatives of inmates also gathered.
The Najayo prison houses about 2,000 inmates convicted of various crimes, mostly for drug trafficking, including a number of foreigners.
It is also one of a number of model prisons, part of an overhaul of the country’s penitentiary system promoting education and more humane living conditions, staffed by specially trained graduates from a newly created penitentiary academy.
Earlier this year, a riot in another prison managed by the model system left two people dead and several wounded.
Editing by David Adams and Alan Crosby