Later reports update the death toll to 61.
Local media alerted inmates that a weapons search was about to take place Jan 25th. The riot that broke out between prisoners and guards lead to National Guard being called in. This is the first time I've heard of a prison riot resulting in total evacuation. The fact that state TV admits their prisons have been "ruled by violence, Mafia, drugs and death" for a long time signals how serious is their dysfunction.
A battle between national guard forces and prisoners at Venezuela’s Uribana prison in western Lara state has left 58 dead, prisons Minister Iris Varela said today.
Forty-six people remain hospitalized and 49 have been released from hospital care and remain under medical supervision, Varela said on state television. Venezuelan authorities completed the evacuation of Uribana today... [Jan 27th]
... Maduro said on state television. “The plan to reform our prisons will continue to ensure they aren’t ruled by violence, Mafia, drugs and death, as they have been for a long time.”
“If we have a state that cannot offer security in a prison, what can happen with the people in the streets,” opposition leader Henrique Capriles Radonski said in an e-mailed statement today. “If this had happened in another country, they would have at least changed the person responsible.”