Iran: 70 Percent of Inmates Infected With COVID-19 in Urmia Prison

Iran: 70 Percent of Inmates Infected With COVID-19 in Urmia Prison

Published by on June 5, 2020

International Liberty Association: Coronavirus has become widespread in Urmia Central Prison, with more than 70 percent of inmates in the prison suffering from the disease. Over the past week, the coronavirus infection has spread to the wards 14 and 15. More than 30 prisoners who tested positive for the virus were taken to a hospital outside the prison on Wednesday.

Earlier on Sunday, 30 other prisoners with symptoms of COVID-19 such as high fever and sneezing, referred to the prison’s clinic. But prison officials returned all of them to the wards without testing or treatment.

There are numerous reports that the prisoners have not been provided with sufficient sanitary products, detergents and disinfectants. Each prisoner can wash his hands only three times in 24 hours.

All detergents and sanitary products are sold at high prices in the prison store through the head of the prison.

The number of inmates in these wards is many times above the capacity and there are reports of prisoners sleeping in corridors and even near the toilets. The prisoners are at grave risk considering the ongoing coronavirus crisis that has engulfed the entire country.

Authorities continue to deny the spread of COVID-19 in Urmia Prison despite reports that prove the opposite.

As of the publication of this report, several inmates in this facility have lost their lives to COVID-19. Four of these victims have been identified as Anvar Ghorbanzadeh, Farigh Mohammadi, Hossein Javadi and Ms Fatemeh Alizadeh.

On April 12, authorities were forced to transfer four inmates in critical condition to a hospital outside of the facility and place them under intensive care. However, they have refused to take further action to test other inmates in this prison or at least adopt preventive measures to avoid a viral surge in Urmia Central Prison.

Outbreaks of Covid-19 and deaths from the virus have been recorded in numerous prisons across Iran.

ILA: During the past months, prisoners rioted in at least eight Iranian prisons. Prisoners fear that they will be infected with the virus in their cramped and unsanitary cells.

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