Convicts sacrifice their health to defend basic rights

Human rights activist Andrei Bandarenka has commented on the hunger strike of Zhodzina jail convicts.

The reason for the hunger strike is the intolerable conditions in which they reside. According to the information from the human rights organization “Platform”, the situation became so critical that their relatives decided to appeal to the Presidential Administration to end the abuse of prisoners.

Among the problems of prison 8, which had previously been voiced by the “Platform”, are the following: cells have the concrete floor (although, according to the regulations, they should be covered with planks or tiles), there are no dryers for shoes and clothes, so it is done in the cell — hence the lack of sanitation and a high risk of contracting tuberculosis, a lack of fresh air due to plastic barriers on the windows. And most importantly, the dirty water is not suitable not only for drinking but also for washing. As human rights defenders learned from the relatives of one of the accused, the Department of Corrections of the Ministry of Internal Affairs is either not aware of the hunger strike, or is trying to hide this fact from relatives.

According to Bandarenka, due to the collusion and unprofessionalism of the law enforcement bodies, convicts have to sacrifice their health to defend their basic rights.

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