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France

French prisoners riot for right to wear shorts

Bourg-en-Bresse prison, often held up as a model for others
Bourg-en-Bresse prison, often held up as a model for others Getty Images/Jean-Philippe Ksiazek

A mutiny broke out in a French jail on Thursday because prisoners were demanding the right to wear shorts in the sweltering heat that has hit France in recent days, a television channel reports.

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At about 4.00pm on Thursday afternoon about 30 prisoners took refuge in a wing of the

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prison and destroyed light fittings, flooded a gangway, destryed surveillance cameras and blocked passages with furniture, a prison warden told LCI TV.

With a summer heatwave pushing temperatures well above 30°C, tempers ran short and anger erupted when authorities told turned down their request to wear shorts, an item of dress that is strictly forbidden by France's prison regulations.

Special units intervened to reestablish order at 7.00pm.

Bourg-en-Bresse is one of France's few jails that is not overpopulated.

Bulit in 2010, it has 700 places, if which 90 per cent are occupied.

A study published in the journal Science on Thursday found that people become more violent when the temperature rises and warned that global warming could increase conflict.

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