Prosecutor orders action over ailing inmate’s photos

A prosecutor on Thursday ordered disciplinary action against an inmate at Attica’s Korydallos Prison who posted photographs on the Internet showing cells at the institution in a bid to highlight crowding and substandard detention conditions at the prison.

The inmate is allegedly suffering from leukemia and is being treated at the prison’s Aghios Pavlos Hospital along with another 214 detainees who have ailments ranging from cancer to heart problems. Some are paraplegic while 130 are HIV positive. Several cases of tuberculosis have been reported in recent days, according to sources. Virtually all of the hospital patients have been on hunger strike since February 17, protesting conditions.

Many of the detainees have asked to be submitted to medical tests at the prison’s hospital or transferred to other hospitals for tests but their requests have not been heeded, according to a spokeswoman for a group lobbying for prisoners’ rights. “The main reason they are protesting is they feel they have been abandoned,” Rosa Kovani told Kathimerini. She said prosecutors assigned to conduct regular checks on the country’s prisons had not visited Korydallos for at least two months. The inmates have claimed that the last time a prosecutor visited Korydallos, she expressed fears of “catching something” from the patients.