Russian ombudsman calls for inspection of penal colonies after recent torture scandal
MOSCOW, July 25 (RAPSI) – Russian Human Rights ombudsman Tatiana Moskalkova has called for a complex inspection of national penal colonies following the public outrage sparked by a video showing torture of an inmate.
According to the press-service of the Human Rights commissioner, appeals against ill-treatment of inmates in penitentiary facilities alongside reports made by regional ombudsmen filed within last 2 years should be examined.
On Tuesday, it was reported that a criminal case over the beating and torture of an inmate in the Yarsolavl Penal Colony One was transferred to the main directorate of the Investigative Committee. Six members of the colony’s staff were detained on suspicion of abuse of office with use of violence.
Earlier, Novaya Gazeta newspaper published a video showing an inmate being tortured by some persons wearing grey camouflage uniforms. Later, it was revealed that the victim in the video had been identified as Yevgeny Makarov, who is serving his term in the Yaroslavl penal colony. The video was filmed by one of the staff members according to lawyers representing Makarov.
Irina Biryukova, the inmate’s attorney, who handed the footage to the media, has asked the Federal Chamber of Attorneys to ensure her safety because of threats from the prison staff. She also announced that she was leaving Russia.
The Chairman of the Presidential Council for Human Rights Mikhail Fedotov visited the penal colony on July 23. The Council filed its reports to the Investigative Committee and the General Prosecutor’s Office.