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Christmas Island: Reports of riot following detainee's death; claims guards have left detention centre.

By Brad Ryan

There are reports guards have left the Christmas Island detention centre after rioting broke out following the death of an escaped detainee.

New Zealand detainee Ricky Downs has told Auckland’s TVNZ there has been rioting and the centre is in chaos. “The canteen’s been smashed to pieces, there’s no security, there’s no emergency response team, there’s no border patrol, there’s no guards, there’s nothing,” he said.

“They’re not here. They’ve gone. They freaked out and left, I think.”

The man whose body was found yesterday was an Iranian Kurd in his 30s. He escaped the centre on Saturday morning and his body was found yesterday. Border protection officials had said the centre remained calm after the death.

Matije, who also says he is also a detainee, said he heard cries for help around the time of the man’s escape.

“The person has been screaming for help and later on, people have been carrying a body bag,” he said.

“It was a couple of screams: ‘Help, help, help me’.”

New Zealand Labour MP Kelvin Davis said the island prison was in chaos, TVNZ reported.

Mr Davis said he had been told the riot began when an inmate was punched in the face by a guard after asking questions about the death of the man.

The Department of Immigration has been contacted for comment.

This post originally appeared on ABC News

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