15 Apr 2012

400 escape from Pakistan prison

5:16 pm on 15 April 2012

Nearly 400 prisoners escaped from a jail in northwest Pakistan early on Sunday after it was attacked by Islamist militants.

Some of those who fled the jail in the town of Bannu, near unruly ethnic Pahstun tribal areas close to the Afghan border, were militants, an intelligence official said.

One of them was on death row for involvement in an assassination attempt on former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf.

Pakistan's Taliban movement, which has close links to al Qaeda, said its fighters mounted the assault, which triggered clashes. Several people were wounded.

The movement has carried out a campaign of suicide attacks and shootings in its drive to topple the US-backed Islamabad Government.