A Group of Prisoners in Gobustan Prison End Hunger Strike
Azerbaijan, Baku /corr. Trend K.Zarbaliyeva / A group of prisoners in Gobustan Prison have ended their hunger strike. The Chief of the Prison, Alizade Huseynov, said on 3 July that 16 people are continuing the strike. They have no serious health problems and are under medical observation, Huseynov said.
Earlier the Penal Service of Azerbaijan stated that the strike began on 20 June and the participants of the hunger strike included inmates sentenced to life-imprisonment after 2000. Relatives of the prisoners stated at a conference on 3 July that the action is being carried out by the prisoners whose death sentences have been commuted to life-imprisonment. They said that the hunger strike began on 18 June.
Eighty-four convicts sentenced to life imprisonment are serving their sentences in Gobustan Closed Prison. After the abolishment of the death penalty the number increased to 128.
The inmates believe that their sentences should be replaced by the hardest punishment of the country which is 15 years imprisonment.
The decision of the European Court on Human Rights relating to the appeal of Alikram Humbatov says that the replacement of the death sentence to life imprisonment corresponds to European Convention. It was noted that life imprisonment is much better than the death sentence.