High Commissioner defended right of convicted mother live with newborn outside open prison

15 December 2016

With assistance of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Russia, right of convicted G. to live with her family outside an open prison has been reinstated.

The High Commissioner received a complaint from husband of G. who had been serving her sentence at an open prison in Irkutsk Region. The spouses have become parents recently, but the administration of the prison refused to provide G. with a possibility to live with her newborn. The authorities referred to the fact that there was no a child care centre in the prison.

The High Commissioner petitioned the Head of the Irkustk Region Department of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia to conduct an inspection related to the complaint. It has been ascertained that earlier G. had been serving sentence at a standard regime penal colony, while later the court changed it to the open prison. The Penal Enforcement Code of the Russian Federation provides for a child care centre only at standard and strict regime women’s colonies. Prisoners serving sentence at an open prison can live near the prison at a rented or private housing. Notwithstanding the provisions of the Penal Enforcement Code of the Russian Federation, the authorities of the prison refused to satisfy the lawful request of G. to live with her child outside the open prison.

In response to the request by the High Commissioner, the Irkutsk Region Department of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia reported that after an additional inspection the complaint of prisoner G. has been satisfied.

Therefore, only after the High Commissioner’s assistance the right of the family to live together outside the open prison has been reinstated.

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