Fourteen prison inmates have reportedly died after eating bread during the transfer from Khujand to Dushanbe.

The Main Penitentiary Directorate of the Ministry of Justice of Tajikistan says 128 prison inmates, including eight women, were being transferred yesterday on three special vehicles from the northern cities of Istaravshan and Khujand to penal colonies Dushanbe, Nurek and Yovon. 

The convoy of vehicles reportedly left Khujand in the afternoon and arrived in Dushanbe at 6:20 pm.

According to the Main Penitentiary Directorate, six stops were made along the way to Dushanbe. 

In the Maykhoura area in the Varzob district, one of prison inmates reportedly distributed three loafs of bread to 16 prison inmates in the vehicle having the number plate 024 BA 01.  Half an hour later, those prison inmates reportedly felt bad.  They started dizzy and vomiting.

When the vehicle entered the Justice-Ministry-run detention facility in Dushanbe, their condition deteriorated.  Those sixteen prison inmates reportedly lost consciousness.

At 6:25 pm, a special ambulance crew came to the detention facility but fourteen of those prison inmates died, says a statement released by the Main Penitentiary Directorate.  

The Prosecutor-General’s Office has launched an investigation in the incident.