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Dozens of Kandahar prisoners on hunger strike

Dozens of Kandahar prisoners on hunger strike

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22 Jan 2018 - 22:26
Dozens of Kandahar prisoners on hunger strike
author avatar
22 Jan 2018 - 22:26

KANDAHAR (Pajhwok): Dozens of prisoners being held at the central jail in southern Kandahar province have been denying food in protest against what they say inordinate delays in processing of their cases and injudicious decisions of judges.

Talking to Pajhwok Afghan News over the telephone, a number of inmates confirmed they were observing the hunger strike for their rights.

One of them, Abdul Salam, said dozens of inmates could not be convicted or tried even after the passage of one year since their detention.

He said a judicial delegation had arrived from the Bagram jail in central Parwan province to Kandahar for investigating cases of the inmates, but the delegation has not been honest in its decisions.

Salam said the delegation sentenced him to 14 years in jail over targeted killings but no evidence could be produced against him.

He said such wrong decisions of the delegation forced the inmates to go for a hunger strike.

Another inmate, Mohammad Daud, also said the visiting delegation was sentencing inmates to long years in jail without considering any evidence.

He said many inmates had confessed to crimes they had not committed in order to avoid being tortured in detention and the forced confessions were being made the basis of their judgments.

Kandahar human rights commission head Fakhruddin Faiz confirmed the hunger strike by the Kandahar prisoners and said cases of some inmates had not been investigated during the past one year.

He said the delay in deciding the cases stemmed from a recent presidential order that called for shifting hardcore criminals to the Bagram jail from Kandahar and their prosecution there.

However, due to lack of resources, the government postponed the shifting of inmates from Kandahar to Bagram and thus some cases were delayed for one year to 13 months.

Faiz said local judges lacked the capacity to convict the criminals and finally a delegation from Bagram came to decide the cases. “We don’t interfere in the judiciary work, but our demand is that the cases of these prisoners should be dealt with honestly.”

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