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Kyrgyz Activists Warn Of Possible Prison Riots

Conditions in Kyrgyzstan's prisons are said to be worsening (AFP) September 26, 2006 -- Rights activists in Kyrgyzstan are warning of possible riots in the country's prison facilities.

In a statement issued on September 25, the Bishkek-based Citizens Against Corruption nongovernmental group says the cash-stripped penitentiary administration is unable to offer inmates adequate food and medical care.

The group cites official figures that show that the tuberculosis-related morbidity rate among inmates has increased by 35 percent in recent months. It also says the quality of food given prisoners has dramatically deteriorated.

Prison riots are likely to erupt unless authorities urgently remedy the situation, the group says.

Its conclusions match those of the International Crisis Group. In a report released on August 16, the Brussels-based think tank described Kyrgyzstan's prisons as a potential source of destabilization.

But in comments printed in today's edition of the "Vecherny Bishkek" daily, Justice Minister Marat Kaiypov says conditions in prisons have "improved."

(with, AKIpress)