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Last Updated: Friday, 23 April, 2004, 21:43 GMT 22:43 UK
Five found dead in Brazil prison
Prisoners at the Urso Branco prison in Porto Velho, Rondonia
Inmates began eating cats after days without food supplies
Police regaining control of a Brazilian prison after a brutal uprising have found five more mutilated bodies.

A total of 14 inmates were killed by fellow prisoners in the five-day revolt in the Urso Branco prison in the Amazon state of Rondonia.

The rebellion ended on Thursday after authorities met the inmates' demands of replacing the prison director and expanding the overcrowded prison.

The inmates released some 170 relatives who had been there since Sunday.

They had arrived during visiting hours and stayed as human shields and later, as hostages, police said.

"This was a battle between two rival groups and they delayed negotiations to settle some scores," said state public security chief Paulo Moraes.

But after days without food, water or electricity, the inmates were forced to eat cats to relieve their hunger, he said.

"Police entered the prison in the early hours of Friday," said a Rondonia state military police spokesman.

"Calm has been restored. It's now a cleanup operation."

A gruesome warning

The rebellion will be remembered as one of the bloodier uprisings of recent times, says the BBC's Steve Kingstone in Rio de Janeiro.

Inmates began a series of revenge killings in which at least one victim's head was cut off and thrown to the ground from the prison roof.

Another man was hacked to death and body parts were thrown out of the prison.

As is often the case in Brazil, the revolt was about overcrowding, our correspondent says.

Designed to hold 360 people, the prison in the state capital of Porto Velho houses more than 1,000 inmates.

State officials say this gruesome sequence of events should act as a warning that the country's penal system needs to be reviewed urgently.


SEE ALSO:
Bid to end Brazil jail uprising
20 Apr 04  |  Americas
Brazil prisons 'a disaster'
08 Sep 03  |  Americas
Brazil jail escape bid kills six
10 Nov 03  |  Americas
Tunnel escape from Brazil jail
10 Aug 03  |  Americas
Inmates die in Brazil crackdown
23 Jun 03  |  Americas
Mass jailbreak in Brazil
12 Apr 03  |  Americas


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