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Ten inmates injured in Arizona prison melee

By David Schwartz

PHOENIX (Reuters) - A brawl sparked by tensions between Hispanic and Black inmates broke out briefly at an Arizona prison on Thursday, injuring 10 inmates, including one still in critical condition, authorities said.

Bill Lamoreaux, a spokesman for the state's Department of Corrections, said the fight broke out at about 4.15 p.m. and involved fewer than 100 inmates. It was quelled within minutes.

He said most of the inmates who were hurt suffered minor injuries and no prison guards were injured. Ten inmates were taken to hospitals for treatment, said Doug Nick, another prison spokesman, with one remaining in critical condition.

The fight at the state prison complex in Buckeye, west of Phoenix, was sparked by "racial tensions" between Hispanic and black inmates and ended "within a matter of minutes," Nick said.

The unit, which houses 1,073 inmates, was expected to remain in lockdown "indefinitely," he said.

(Reporting by David Schwartz; editing by Cynthia Johnston, G Crosse, and Eric M. Johnson)