The uprising began on December 29 when prisoners started several fires in the courtyard. The inmates then occupied the so-called “ upper prison, ” a former part of the complex, set other buildings on fire and moved to the roof, the New Zealand Department of Corrections said. During the six-day occupation, the group caused “enormous damage to the compound.”
Prisoners protested against the poor conditions in the prison, according to MP Rawiri Waititi. “They were ready to come down. Of course, they are tired and hungry, but they are still very determined in their demand for change, ”he said.
However, the ministry mainly drew attention to the destruction. “While the group claims to demonstrate against the bad conditions in the prison and not to seek riots, their actions were clearly violent.”
The entire penitentiary complex normally has around 750 inmates. Other inmates from the old part of the prison were transferred to other quarters.
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