European Interest

Greece: Too many prisoners held in conditions that represent “an affront to their human dignity” according to CPT report

Council of Europe

The Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) has published its report on a visit to Greece (from 22 November to 1 December 2021) to examine prisoner treatment and review progress made by the authorities in implementing recommendations made over the past decade. These mainly concern overcrowding and poor detention conditions, inter-prisoner violence, severe understaffing, and inadequate health care provision. (see Greek version of the report)

In its report, the CPT concludes that far too many prisoners in Greece continue to be held in conditions, which represent an “affront to their human dignity”. The Committee urges the Greek authorities to ensure that prisons move away from merely warehousing persons in “overcrowded, dangerous and poor conditions” with no purposeful activities to places which offer decent living conditions and that prepare persons for reintegration back into the community upon their release. In addition, the Greek authorities need to invest in sufficient, competent staff to manage prisons and provide requisite support to persons held in prison.

The CPT report and the response of the authorities have been made public at the request of the Greek Government. (see the response in Greek)

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