Jamaican Troops Storm Drug Lord Stronghold

Body count mounts in battle extradition
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 25, 2010 4:44 AM CDT
Alleged drug gang leader Christopher "Dudus" Coke is wanted by the US.   (AP Photo/The Jamaica Gleaner)
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(Newser) – At least one Jamaican soldier was killed as 1,000 troops and police stormed the Kingston stronghold of alleged drug kingpin Christopher "Dudus" Coke. Bodies could be seen in the street as forces carried out house-to-house searches in the Tivoli Gardens housing complex, the BBC reports. Several people were arrested during the offensive but Coke is not believed to be among them.

Gun battles between security forces and gunmen seeking to block Coke's extradition to the US have spread to other parts of Kingston and a state of emergency remains in place, AP reports. Several police stations have been attacked and at least two policemen have died in unrest since Sunday. The bloodshed is "inescapable and unavoidable," a spokesman for the ruling Labour Party said. "We hope that out of the national crisis there will come a rebirth of Jamaica, the land we love."

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