NEWS

Some inmates refusing water

As thousands of prisoners continued a hunger strike in protest of detention conditions, 10 inmates at the high-security Malandrino Prison in Fokida, central Greece, reportedly started refusing water as well. According to a group representing protesting prisoners, 6,300 inmates are on hunger strike, while another 5,500 are boycotting their jails’ mess halls. «What have they got to lose – their chains? They will not give in until they are totally vindicated,» said Annita Michailidou, a spokesperson for the group. «If the problem is not resolved immediately we will start to see health problems and even deaths,» she added. Justice Minister Sotiris Hatzigakis has pledged to ease overcrowding and to introduce a methadone program for heroin addicts. But prisoners have rejected the reforms as «inadequate.» They want an increase in furloughs, the introduction of a provision allowing convicts serving jail terms of up to five years to pay off their sentences and the reduction of remand time from 18 to 12 months.