MORE than 50 people have died in a prison riot in western Venezuela, the latest incident in the crisis in the country's crowded jails.

Violence broke out after news of an inspection to confiscate weapons at the Centro Occidental jail. It was reported that 54 people were killed, including inmates, guards and prison workers.

Around 90 people were injured, mostly fby gunfire.

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Venezuela's 34 prisons are controlled by armed gangs and were designed to hold only a third of the 50,000 inmates now in them.

■venezuela