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Libya searching for inmates after jailbreak

July 29, 2013 at 12:59 PM

BENGHAZI, Libya, July 29 (UPI) -- Security teams in Benghazi, Libya, have detained very few of the prisoners who escaped in a weekend jailbreak, a defense spokesman said.

Benghazi security spokesman Mohamed Hejazi told the Libya Herald nearly 1,200 prisoners escaped Saturday from the Kuayfia detention center. He was quoted Monday as saying there were "no specific figures" outlining how many were captured, saying only special security teams were "still searching for detainees."

The Libyan newspaper reported more than a dozen prisoners were back behind bars and some had surrendered voluntarily.

The security director said the jailbreak was not supported by outside elements. A recent prison break in Iraq was said to have been carried out by al-Qaida.

The Libyan government closed its border with Egypt following the Saturday prison break to prevent detainees from crossing the border.

Libya has struggled to establish a sense of political and national stability since a new government was formed in the wake of civil war in 2011.

Abdelsalam al-Mismari, an activist who helped lead the 2011 uprising against former leader Moammar Gadhafi, was assassinated following Friday prayers in Benghazi.

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