Home > Press Articles > Prisoners’ families protest outside Grand Serail

Prisoners’ families protest outside Grand Serail

The Daily Star 21/11/2011

BEIRUT: Families of inmates demonstrated outside the Grand Serail Monday to pressure the Lebanese government to endorse a law to reduce the prison year to nine months.

A crowd of about 150 families of inmates from jails across Lebanon, particularly the notorious Roumieh prison northeast of Beirut, took part in the protest outside the Grand Serail in Downtown Beirut shortly before midday.

The demonstration, in coordination with the prisoners, was aimed to put more pressure on Parliament to endorse a draft law to reduce the prison year from 12 to nine months.

Authorities have been facing mounting pressure from inmates who in recent weeks have escalated their protests to include hunger strikes.

In April, a three-day riot by inmates at Roumieh fueled by harsh living conditions left at least four people dead and almost 10 others wounded as prisoners demanded general amnesty.

In August, lawmakers who had turned down the original draft law to reduce the prison year, passed the bill for revision to the Administration and Justice Committee.

But the head of the committee Robert Ghanem suggested each prisoner case be considered separately and individually.

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/ArticlePrint.aspx?id=154743&mode=print

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