[Updated 1:36 p.m.] Police in Jamaica have more than 500 people in custody, the government said, after a failed attempt to arrest a suspected drug kingpin resulted in violence that left at least 44 people dead.
Security forces are "processing" people, with students and young people getting first priority, the government said.
"The Security Forces are also helping residents of Tivoli Gardens" - a neighborhood, where much of the violence took place - "taking those needing medical care to hospitals. Medication is also being provided to residents," the government said.
[Posted at 11:08 a.m.] The death toll has risen to 44 as a result of clashes in Jamaica between security forces and alleged drug gang members and their supporters, according to Jamaican Public Defender Earle Witter and Political Ombudsman Hero Blair.
Security forces have been fighting people who want to prevent the extradition to the United States of Christopher "Dudus" Coke, who was charged last year in U.S. federal court with conspiracy to distribute marijuana and cocaine and with conspiracy to illegally traffic in firearms.
The street battles have taken place in the Kingston neighborhoods of Tivoli Gardens and Denham Town, officials said.