Two young people were found dead in their cells within hours of each other in the same Northern Ireland jail, prison authorities said on Thursday.
Both had ligatures around their necks and are suspected of having hanged themselves, they added.
Prison sources told Reuters that the two inmates did not know each other and that their deaths were being treated separately.
The Department of Justice said 19-year-old Samuel Carson, who was awaiting trial on a sex charge, was found collapsed in his cell by prison staff at a young offenders centre in Belfast just after 5 p.m. on Wednesday.
Despite efforts by wardens and paramedics, he could not be revived.
About 3-1/2 hours later, 23-year-old Frances McKeown was found collapsed in her cell in the neighbouring woman's prison. She too could not be revived.
Investigations by the Police Service of Northern Ireland, the coroner and the Prisoner Ombudsman have all been launched.
"Yesterday's tragic events ... have stunned everyone and there is a deep sadness across the service," Colin McConnell, Director General of the Northern Ireland Prison Service said in a statement.
"At this very difficult time I offer my sympathies to both the Carson and McKeown families. They are in the thoughts and prayers of our entire service."
ReutersGüncelleme Tarihi: 05 Mayıs 2011, 17:51