Official: 12 escape from Ivory Coast prison

July 9, 2012 - 1:38 PM

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast (AP) — An official in Ivory Coast says 12 inmates have escaped from Abidjan's main prison, in the second prison break in two months.

Serge Kouame, head of communication for the justice ministry said Monday the alarm failed to function because of an electricity outage. He says four inmates remain on the run after the weekend escape.

In early May, around 50 prisoners escaped from the same prison, prompting a statement of concern from the country's U.N. mission regarding "the high number of mass prison breaks." There have been at least six prison breaks since January, with the others occurring outside the capital. During postelection violence that rocked the country following the disputed 2010 presidential election, some 12,000 prisoners escaped from 22 prisons in southern Ivory Coast, according to the U.N.