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Ombudsman speaks about tortured prisoners

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Friday, November 21
The Public Defenderís Office claims that the employees of the Ombudsmanís Office have found two tortured prisoners in Prison No. 8.

The Public Defenderís Office called on the Prosecutorís Office of Georgia to conduct an immediate investigation. According to the Public Defenderís Office the tortured inmates must be examined.

ďOn 12 November, 2014, our attorneys visited prison No. 8 to monitor the facility. They heard screamingÖ they entered the bathroom and saw two tortured prisoners. The deputy director of the prison and other employees of the administration were at the crime scene,Ē says the statement of the Public Defenderís Office.

Concerning the issue, a special briefing was held by Deputy Minister of the Penitentiary Kakha Kakhishvili. He states that the Public Defenderís Office should have released the information as soon as the fact took place.

Kakhishvili stresses that time plays a crucial role for carrying out an effective investigation.

ďWhen such fact takes place on November 12, and you inform the public about the issue on November 19, it is natural that the investigation will not be as effective as it would have been in the case of a timely reaction. We are ready to work on the issue with all interested sides. The case has been taken under the ministerís personal control,Ē Kakhishvili stated, stressing that if confirmed, those taking part in the wrongdoing would be severely punished.

The government and parliamentary majority representatives claim that the situation in Georgiaís prisons is fully controlled by the prison administrations. However, the opposition United National Movement claims that criminal bosses have been trying to regain influence in the prisons since the Georgian Dream coalition took office.