TBILISI, DFWatch–Several prisoners at Geguti prison in Georgia have been taken to hospital with self-inflicted injuries. Doctors say their health is in no danger.
For several days, about 800 prisoners have been on hunger strike at the prison, which is in the west of the country.
Public Defender Ucha Nanuashvili, who visited the prison camp on Monday, said 46 prisoners have self-inflicted injuries, but some of the prisoners who were taken to hospital in Kutaisi were feeling bad because of hunger.
Earlier, the Prison Ministry issued a statement saying that the injured prisoners were given medical treatment and that 17 of them had self-inflicted injuries and were sent back to prison.
Family and relatives gathered outside Geguti prison and attempted to break into the facility, but the guards repelled them. They also demand a meeting with the prison director to explain what is happening in jail. Relatives want to know who are injured and how they are.
The ombudsman earlier reported that prisoners demand to investigate the harassment against them by the administration of Geguti ‘colony’.
Deputy Prison Minister Archil Talakvadze said at a briefing on Monday there is an investigation into what the prisoners have told. He also said that the main demand of those on hunger strike is to replace the prison administration.
He said prisoners inflicted injuries on themselves by using home items which they are allowed to have at the prison. According to Talakvadze, the staff at the prison have not used force these days.
The ombudsman says the situation in Geguti must be regulated and everyone must avoid reporting false and unchecked information, as it escalates the situation even more. He said it is important to review each of the demands the prisoners have and try to accommodate their requests if they are within the frames of the law.