23 die in Ethiopia prison fire over weekend, government says

A state-affiliated broadcaster in Ethiopia is reporting that 23 people have died in a prison fire over the weekend.

The Kilinto prison on the outskirts of the capital, Addis Ababa, is where many opposition figures and journalists are held.

Fana Broadcasting Corporate cites a government statement as saying 21 inmates died from stampede and suffocation. It says the other two were killed while trying to escape.

Activists in Ethiopia first raised concerns about the fire on Saturday, saying around 20 had been killed.

The government originally said only one person died in the fire.

The latest government statement does not say how the fire began. It says an investigation has begun.