Council of Europe concerned about torture in Georgian prisons
MOSCOW, September 20 - RAPSI. The Council of Europe (COE) is concerned with information regarding the inhumane treatment of prisoners in Georgia and has asked Tbilisi for an explanation, Secretary General Thornbjorn Yagland said in a statement.
According to the document, the COE is worried by the information that prisoners are being tortured in a Council of Europe member country.
The Tbilisi City Court has ruled to place 11 individuals into custody in the case on the inhumane treatment of prisoners, the court said in a press release.
An investigation is underway, the News Georgia media agency reported.
On Tuesday, the Georgian Interior Ministry reported that it had uncovered incidents of prisoners being treated poorly in Gldani Prison No. 8 in Tbilisi.
Investigators said a group of prison employees were treating prisoners cruelly, and recorded video materials. The Georgian Prosecutor's Office said 10 Punishment Execution Department employees have been arrested, including the deputy department head and the prison director.
Yagland said the council is studying the information and is determined to refer to Georgia's competent authorities to clear the situation.
The Georgian Interior Ministry published the video materials on its website, noting that only a small portion of the materials have been made available to the public. The remaining footage will not be shown to the general population due to its explicit content, it said.
However, the Maestro and Ninth TV channels showed shocking videos of beatings and rapes taking place in prison, and claim that they have all the recorded materials.
The channels said they received the videos from the prison's former employee Vladimir Bedukadze, who now is in Belgium. Tbilisi and other Georgian cities saw rallies demanding that those guilty be punished and Minister of Corrections and Legal Assistance Khatuna Kalmakhelidze be fired.
On Wednesday, the minister resigned.