GVF — Prisons in Iran are currently overcrowded as much as eight times their maximum capacity, according to a report by the reformist Shargh daily.
Describing the poor prison conditions in the country, the newspaper said that in some cases, some 800 inmates were being held a single prison whose maximum capacity was 100 detainees.
“The country’s prisons can hold up to 55,000 inmates, but there are currently more than 220,000 prisoners,” says Iran’s head of Prisons Organisation. Less than three months ago, Gholamhossein Esmaili announced that since he took over as the country’s prison chief a year and a half ago, the number of prisoners in the country had risen by 55,000.
Citing a member of the Iranian parliament’s judicial commission, the newspaper said the condition of some of the prison complexes made them “inoperative,” raising the vulnerability to diseases under poor hygienic condition.
“At the moment, the number of prisoners is four times the capacity, and in some places, the number of inmates is as much as eight times bigger. This means that in a prison that can hold up to a hundred detainees, 800 are being held. This is something we can see in smaller cities,” Yousefian told Shargh.
While acknowledging the need for more prison space, he asked “with the changing laws on a global scale, is there really a need for so many prisoners?”
According to Shargh, on 30 April, Younes Mousavi, another member of the judicial commission of the parliament, voiced similar concerns regarding overcrowded prisons, claiming that some prisoners were forced to sleep in prison corridors due to a lack of space.