How did the Taliban pull off Afghanistan’s ‘great escape’?
Hundreds of prisoners escaped from a jail in Afghanistan’s south on Monday through a tunnel dug by Taliban insurgents, a major setback for Afghan and foreign forces just before the start of the traditional summer fighting season.
Tooryalai Wesa, governor of volatile Kandahar province, said 488 prisoners escaped from the province’s main Sarposa jail. The Taliban said 541 prisoners crawled their way to freedom.
Here are some facts about the tunnel and how the Taliban’s great escape was carried out.
HOW DID THE TALIBAN BUILD IT?
With time and patience, and most likely inside help. The 320-metre long tunnel was started in a house within sight of the prison and the Taliban, who often make exaggerated claims, say it took five months to build. That means digging began early in the winter, probably around November or earlier. The house had been rented for eight months and the tunnelling likely began soon after the house was secured.