Raid in Philippines frees Islamic inmates

  • Sat Dec 12th, 2009 10:35pm
  • News

Associated Press

MANILA, Philippines — Dozens of suspected Islamic militants broke through a wall and barged into a jail in the Philippines today, freeing 31 inmates in a nighttime attack that sparked a gunbattle in which two people were killed, officials said.

The vice governor of Basilan island said about 30 heavily armed men cut through padlocks with boltcutters after destroying the wall at the provincial jail in Isabela city to free several detained Muslim guerrillas, adding that other inmates also dashed to freedom.

The daring assault sparked a brief clash that killed one attacker and a jail guard, he said.

At least 31 inmates escaped, including suspected militants from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the smaller but more violent Abu Sayyaf group.