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Hundreds of Afghan insurgents escape from prison. Again.

US troops capture them, Afghan police let them escape. For the second time in two years, hundreds of Taliban prisoners have escaped from a heavily armed fortress manned by Afghan police. The incident shows the futility of training the Afghan’s to police themselves.

From AFP…

Almost 500 Taliban fighters and commanders tunnelled out of a prison in an audacious jailbreak in southern Afghanistan which the government admitted on Monday was a security “disaster”.

The Taliban said it was behind the operation to free the inmates through a 360-metre tunnel into Kandahar prison which it been digging for five months. It claimed all those who escaped were Taliban, including over 100 commanders.

The daring breakout in the Taliban’s heartland, the prison’s second in three years, threatens to undermine recent gains claimed by NATO forces in the area after a US-led troop surge, just as the annual fighting season begins.

It is also a major embarrassment for Afghan forces who are due to take on greater responsibility for security in their country ahead of the planned withdrawal of foreign combat troops in 2014.

“A tunnel hundreds of metres long was dug from the south of the prison into the prison, and 476 political prisoners escaped last night,” prison director General Ghulam Dastageer Mayar said.

The escapees, who represent over a third of the prison’s total population, came from its political section, he added.

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