French Prison Guards Protesting, Blocking Access to Jails - Trade Union

French Prison Guards Protesting, Blocking Access to Jails - Trade Union”

The inmate was visiting with his wife when the attack occurred, and authorities believe she may have snuck the knife into the facility with her.

A local union leader at the Fleury-Merogis prison outside Paris told the AFP that "colleagues want to go to work but we do not abandon them, we do not send them to die".

Police reinforcements have been rushed to the prison, the justice ministry said.

"There is no doubt about the terrorist nature of this attack", Belloubet told reporters.

Prison guards on Wednesday blocked access to jails across France, protesting an attack by a possibly radicalized inmate at Conde-sur-Sarthe prison, which left two guards seriously wounded, according to the SNP FO trade union.

Chiolo was heard shouting "Allahu Akhbar" (God is Greatest) during his rampage in a family-visiting area, staff representative Alassanne Sall told AFP on Tuesday.

French Prison Guards Protesting, Blocking Access to Jails - Trade Union

The latest violence comes as prison staff nationwide, who have been demanding better working conditions, have repeatedly staged protests on Tuesdays.

The perpetrator of Tuesday's bloodshed was a mentally unstable 27-year-old former homeless man already serving a 30-year prison sentence for violent crime.

Experts and trade unions have consistently raised the alarm about the spread of extremism in French prisons, leading the government to build special facilities to house risky individuals who are sometimes held in solitary confinement.

Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet said the prisoner's wife was visiting him and he locked himself in the room after stabbing the guards with a ceramic knife. Chekatt was shot dead by police after a two-day manhunt in the eastern French city. A police source told the AFP news agency that Chiolo had been radicalised in prison.

Anti-terror prosecutors have launched an investigation into the incident at the Conde-sur-Sarthe prison, in western France.

France has suffered a series of attacks from Islamic extremists since 2015 and is on high alert amid concerns about the return of Islamic State jihadists from Syria.

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