Prisons health conditions fail ‘minimal’ criteria: EIPR
Prison - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: Prison conditions in Egypt fail to meet even minimal standards for health, stated a Tuesday report by the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights.

The report, “Health in Egypt’s prisons: field research about health in the closed world of prisons,” stated many prisons lack good health services, and there is no clear mechanism to enable inmates to receive this treatment.

EIPR noted a lack of urgent care in the cases of emergencies, and slowness in procedures and making decisions to interfere in critical medical cases. As a cause, it cited Egyptian Prison Authority supervision of the doctors, rather than the Ministry of Health, which it said “negatively affects the independence of medical opinion.”

The report said there is no control that guarantees adherence to laws that protect the health and lives of prisoners, and that correctional facilities’ commitment to legal texts related to prisoners’ health, among other things, depends on the will of prison officials.

Hunger-striking Al Jazeera journalist Abdullah Elshamy was given a release order Monday evening by Attorney General Hisham Barakat Monday evening for medical reasons, as were 12 other people charged in the same case.

Shamy was on a hunger strike for 148 days after being arrested during the Rabaa dispersal on Aug. 14, 2013.

Matariya Police Station Magistrate Mohamed Negm apologized to the Matariya prosecution for not showing up Tuesday to give testimony regarding the Monday death of a prisoner at the Matariya Police Station detention due to severe exhaustion. Negm justified his absence with “being busy at work,” Youm7 reported.

Additional reporting by Mohamed Sharqawy.

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