The Public Defender’s recommendation to the Minister of Internal Affairs
On March 29, 2011, members of the Special Preventive Group of the Public Defender’s Office met and talked with the persons who had been sentenced to administrative imprisonment – Giorgi Kharabadze, Akaki Chiqovani, and Merab Chiqashvili. On March 26, 2011, the Administrative Panel of the Tbilisi City Court made a decision to impose administrative imprisonment on G. Kharabadze and M. Chiqashvili for 20 days and on A. Chiqovani for 10 days.
The persons sentenced to administrative imprisonment pointed out that in the temporary detention isolator their right to take a one-hour walk is restricted and they do not have the opportunity to take a shower, due to which they cannot observe personal hygiene, and that they cannot get acquainted with the press. G. Kharabadze declared that he had been demanding a doctor’s visit for three days, which was later granted. He also pointed out that he had resorted to a form of protest – a hunger strike, though he had not been transferred to another cell and had not been visited by a doctor since he started the hunger strike.
The Public Defender considers that persons sentenced to administrative imprisonment should enjoy all the rights that convicts have. Accordingly, they should not only enjoy the right to take a walk every day, but also have the opportunity to meet family members and have phone conversations and contact with the outside world, which the legislation in force in Georgia does not provide for.
The Public Defender has pointed out in more than one parliamentary report that the infrastructure of the temporary detention isolators does not allow for the exercise of the rights of persons sentenced to administrative imprisonment provided not only by international standards, but also by the local norms.
The Public Defender considers it a step forward that the Minister of Internal Affairs of Georgia has adopted Order No. 108 of February 10, 2010, on the Approval of the Typical Regulations, Routine, and Additional Instruction Regulating the Temporary Detention Isolators of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia. However, there is an obvious inconsistency of some dispositions of the Order with the international standards.
Considering the aforementioned circumstances, in the parliamentary report of 2010, the Public Defender addressed the government of Georgia with a recommendation to ensure the creation of special establishments for persons sentenced to administrative imprisonment which will be adapted to long-term incarceration, taking into consideration the regional principle.
In accordance with Paragraph B, Article 21 of the Organic Law of Georgia on the Public Defender of Georgia, the Public Defender has addressed the Minister of Internal Affairs with a recommendation to ensure the exercise of all those rights of the persons sentenced to administrative imprisonment which are provided for in Order No. 108 at the starting stage.
In accordance with Paragraph A, Article 21 of the Organic Law of Georgia on the Public Defender of Georgia, the Public Defender has addressed the Minister of Internal Affairs with a recommendation to ensure the issuance of a new normative act which will reflect all the rights of detainees/prisoners.