Officials in Venezuela are pointing fingers at each other over who bears responsibility for clashes between inmates and security forces at a prison that left 37 people dead.

Interior Minister Nestor Reverol says authorities were forced to take action after the state governor failed to resolve a crisis at the small prison in the southern city of Puerto Ayacucho.

Amazonas Gov. Liborio Guarulla replies that the ruling socialist party has begun its campaign for the governorship with a "massacre." He tweeted a gruesome photo Thursday of bloodied bodies piled on top of each other.

Families of the prisoners are still waiting for the dead to be identified.

It's the deadliest prison violence in Venezuela since a 2013 riot killed 61. Many of Venezuela's jails are dominated by gangs.