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All Ecuador prison staff held hostage by inmates now free, officials say – Times of India

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QUITO: All prison staff held by inmates at prisons in Ecuador amid a sharp uptick in violence had been freed by Saturday evening, the SNAI prisons agency said.
The hostages, which SNAI previously said were 158 guards and 20 administrative staffers, were held since last Monday in at least seven prisons as a security crisis escalates in the South American country.
President Daniel Noboa on the social media platform X congratulated SNAI, police and armed forces for the successful release of the prison staff.
There would be an investigation to determine those responsible for the hostage-taking, SNAI said in its statement.
SNAI reported incidents at several prisons earlier Saturday, including an armed confrontation with inmates at the prison in El Oro province that resulted in the death of a guard.
Ecuador is grappling with a security crisis that worsened this week with the on-air storming of a TV station, unexplained explosions in several cities and the kidnapping of police officers.
Armed groups appear to be reacting to Noboa’s plans to tackle the dire security situation, according to the government.
The police and the armed forces were continuing to carry out operations around the country. More than 1,000 people have been arrested since a state of emergency began on Monday, the government said.





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