Foreigners to be moved from riot jail

2012-02-23 10:00

Denpasar - Indonesia said on Thursday it would evacuate all 60 foreigners as well as female prisoners from a jail on Bali Island currently under the control of rioting inmates.

"We will evacuate the foreign and female prisoners soon but we won't publicise the time. The evacuation could be by land or air but I cannot give you the specifics," provincial military command spokesperson Wing Handoko said.

"We will not storm the prison before they are removed as we fear that their lives will be put at risk," he added.

Sixty foreigners are held at the jail said Anang Khuzairi, head of security at Kerobokan. The jail is home to 1 015 inmates - among them 125 women - more than three times its intended capacity.

The foreigners include 12 convicted Australian drug traffickers, including Schapelle Corby and a group known as the "Bali Nine", who were caught attempting to smuggle drugs from Bali.

The Associated Press reported that hundreds of security forces surrounded a prison on the resort island of Bali on Thursday, firing warning shots and tear gas to quell inmates after a second night of rioting.

Tense but under control

Local police chief Beny Arjanto said were no immediate reports of injuries.

By late morning, the situation appeared tense but under control.

Prisoners at the Kerobokan jail - which houses drug traffickers, paedophiles, murderers and petty criminals - were demanding the release of three inmates detained after unrest initially flared on Wednesday.

They threw one Molotov cocktail and rocks at guards from inside their cells, Arjanto said.

Soldiers and police surrounding the facility, backed by water canons and armoured vehicles, responded with tear gas and shots in the air, he said.