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Death toll rises in Haitian prisons

Seventeen prisoners died this year in the Jacmel civil prison, four of them last week, denounced the Makaya Society, an organization in defense of human rights. / Haitian prisons

Jean Jeudy, general secretary of the platform, told Le Nouvelliste newspaper that respiratory difficulties and malnutrition were the main causes of his death, and criticized the unsanitary conditions of the facility. / Haitian prisons

According to the activist, most of the 700 detainees in the prison located southeast of this capital are sick and malnourished, while the local authorities work to develop rescue plans together with the private ones that allow the prison to be supplied with food.

Deaths in Haitian prisons have increased in recent years, and in June at least eight people died of starvation, lack of water, heat and disease in Les Cayes, a city in southern Haiti.

The Integrated Office of the United Nations expressed its concern about this phenomenon, which it associates with the “very high” rate of prolonged preventive detention that exceeds 90 percent, which leads to prison overcrowding.

The organization assured that the resumption of judicial hearings in that city is urgent in order to reduce the number of detainees who were never heard by a judge or had access to lawyers.

Since 2018, Haiti has led the list of nations with the highest overcrowding in prisons that operate at triple their capacity, and recurrent strikes in the judicial sector have worsened the situation.

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