Chairwoman of the political party Georgian Dream – Democratic Movement Manana Kobakhidze said, “Prisoners are placed in prisons but cannot leave them afterwards.”
Manana Kobakhidze spoke about problems in penitentiary system during the presentation of the Democratization Guidelines for Georgia prepared by Club of Independent Experts in the hotel Courtyard Marriot.
Kobakhidze was co-author of the second part of the book which is about human rights issues.
“Situation in penitentiary system is alarming and extremely difficult. The right to life of prisoners is completely unprotected. Last year, 140 inmates died in penitentiary settings. The alleged reason of their deaths was health problems. There are cases when 18-year-old people enter prison, get ill with tuberculosis or Hepatitis C, they are not properly treated and [then die]. The convicted receive proper medical service only after the European Court takes up their cases. There are cases of violent death facts, when prisoners are found hung-up in their cells [alleging it was suicide],” Kobakhidze said.
Additionally, one of the main reasons for increased number of prisoners [in the country] is politically motivated persecution of people and noted that government of Georgia has inert and criminal approach to personal life.
“People are placed in prison and cannot leave them afterwards. On the one hand it is caused by diseases and on the other hand by aggregated punishments that place them in custodies for a long time,” Kobakhidze said.
She added that prisoners encounter problems in implementation of their right to defense as well as in their re-socialization process.
Kobakhidze believes altered Zero Tolerance principle, legislative changes, large-scaled amnesty for the convicted for minor crimes and establishment of Public Monitoring Council will resolve current problems in the field.
News Agency “Pirveli”