JAKARTA - Indonesian police were hunting on Tuesday for more than 250 inmates who fled a jail in Papua that had been set ablaze a day earlier, during a wave of civil unrest in cities across the country's easternmost area.
The jail in the port city of Sorong was targeted in violence sparked by claims of racist abuse and physical mistreatment of Papuans studying elsewhere in Indonesia.
Protesters had attacked the jail among other buildings, said Ade Kusmanto, a spokesman for the director-general of correctional facilities at the Law and Human Rights ministry.
"After burning the regional government's office facilities, (protesters) headed to the prison and threw rocks, provoking inmates," said Kusmanto, adding that a prison warden had been injured in the unrest.
The official said 258 inmates had escaped, from among 547 held in the jail, but added that some had since been recaptured, without elaborating.