Human Rights Violations in Penitentiary Institutions in 2017-2018
The years long prevailing issues in penitentiary institutions remain unsolved. This was the note struck by public group of monitors conducting supervision over RA ministry of justice penitentiary institutions on December 13 Media Center discussion.

The discussion was attended by Hasmik Harutyunyan, chair of the public group of monitors, Suren Krmoyan, deputy interim minister of justice, Robert Revazyan, member of public group of monitors, lawyer, Nare Hovhannisyan, Ara Gharagyozyan and Ruben Sargsyan, members of public group of monitors.

Hasmik Harutyunyan, chair of public group of monitors noted that positive changes have taken place regarding some issues.  

“There are changes particularly regarding overpopulation, food issues, increase of number of suspended sentence, but it is still at question whether the institution’s further activity will be effective”, Harutyunyan said. 

Harutyunyan pointed out the living conditions, medical service, corruption risks, hierarchic relationships. She emphasized that the alarms they received and issues raised during their visits deal with the medical service.  

“There is also personnel filling issue, in some cases the positions are not properly filled,’ Harutyunyan added.

Suren Krmoyan, deputy interim minister of justice said that currently there are over 2305 people at custody in penitentiary institutions which is an unprecedented number. 

“It is not only the result of amnesty but also suspended sentence, change of regimes and  improvements on the whole,” the deputy minister said.
He noted that more than 50 percent of problems stated by the observers deal with medical service and the government is giving due attention to those issues.  

According to Krmoyan penitentiary institutions were given AMD 150 million instead of last year’s 43 million to acquire medication. 

“There are almost no complaints regarding medicatiob”, Krmoyan said.
Speaking about personnel problems he noted that new funds are allocated to solve personnel issues by providing high salaries.

“People in penitentiary institutions should receive the same medical aid as those in civil institutions”, Krmoyan noted. 

“There is no and will be no obstacle to treat people in specialized institutions. I think by next year will have solved the issues in prison medical service,” Krmoyan added.


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