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ISIS resurgence fears after terrorists escape infamous earthquake-hit jail

Fears of an ISIS resurgence have erupted after jailed terrorists broke out of a notorious prison during devastating earthquakes.

A prison holding more than 1300 Islamic State fighters was breached in a mutiny following last week's horrendous earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.

At least 20 ISIS prisoners escaped the military police prison in Rajo in Syria, near the Turkish border, when the two earthquakes struck the region on Monday, February 6, the Associated French Press reports.

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"After the earthquake struck, inmates started to mutiny and took control of parts of the prison," an official at Rajo jail said following the natural disaster that has killed thousands.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said that while it could not verify whether prisoners had escaped from the infamous military police jail, nicknamed "Black Prison", it confirmed there was a mutiny.

While ISIS is seen as an active group with little power, experts have said that it may use the earthquakes as an opportunity to make a comeback.

Dr Hamoon Khelghat-Doost, a professor of political science at the University of Lincoln, said that the chaos caused by the earthquakes may benefit ISIS in the future.

"The whole focus of Turkey and its allies is on how to respond to the devastating earthquake and its consequences”, he told The Media Line.

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"Any event, including natural disasters, that can divert the attention of a nation to a topic other than securing its borders is very much welcomed by extremist organisations such as ISIS”, he added.

The death toll from the magnitude 7.8 and 7.5 quakes that struck nine hours apart in southeastern Turkey and northern Syria has shot up to 33,185 and is very likely to increase as rescue teams find more bodies.

Officials have publicly said that the damage caused by the two earthquakes was made worse because of property developers cutting corners, announcing on February 12 that the country would investigate 131 people for shoddily constructing buildings that may have led to significant deaths in Turkey.

Turkish officials have also admitted that more than a million people are currently living outdoors in tent encampments at a time when night temperatures can go as low as -9C.

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