corruption

Repressions continue

… although the Ministry of Justice has been congratulating itself in 2016 for having given drinking water to prisoners. Repression against activist prisoners continues and indeed against the very prisoner whose case in the European Court of Human Rights forced the Ministry of Justice to improve the conditions in the first place, in case someone has made the mistake that the Bulgarian state has given toilets and drinking water to prisoners out of the goodness of their hearts. The repression…

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Bulgarian state supports racist groups which are hunting for migrants

Since the private TV station bTV reported about people who are patroling with All-terrain vehicles through the border region of Bulgaria and calling their leader a national hero, more groups popped up in public which claim for arresting the migrants who crossed to Turkish-Bulgarian border. Although, the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee called for prosecution of the case. The prime minister, Boyko Borissov, thanked in a statement these patrols: I personally talked with them [the voluntary patrols] and thank them. I send the director of the…

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Legal and organizational problems in Bulgaria’s closed camps

At the moment, there are three camps of a closed type existing in Bulgaria. The buildings, which are administered from the Migration Directorate of the Ministry of Interior (MoI), provide 1,040 places: The Detention Center in Busmantsi has 400, the Detention Center in Lyubimets (since recently) 400 and the Detention Center in Elhovo has 240 places. In these accommodation facilities unaccompanied minors are being held illegally, which was reported by the Ombudsman some days ago. A recent statement, done by the Center for Legal Aid – Voice in Bulgaria (CLA), confirmed the report.…

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BPRA Nominated for Human of the Year 2015

We have been nominated for Human of the Year 2015 in the annual contest of Bulgarian Helsinki Committee. Here are the motives: Bulgarian Prisoners Rehabilitation Association (BPRA) directly defends the human rights of prisoners in Bulgaria. Though consequential work to reform the criminal justice system of Bulgaria, the human rights of all Bulgarian citizens are enhanced. The BPRA is uniquely a NGO for prisoners that seeks to reconcile the operation of Bulgarian prisons with international obligations to human rights for…

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BPRA Here To Stay!

Imprisonment over the conviction time There have been numerous calls for some information to escape the prison walls of Sofia Central and I hope I can appease these requests for information although I am not sure what people will find interesting. Daily I am continuing my university degree via correspondence that was guaranteed after a 30 day hunger strike by the Ministry of Justice in May 2013. My marks are good and steady despite the lack of internet and source…

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The incident of 17th October 2013

On the Association’s blog I have up until now not written much if anything about myself in an attempt to keep the Association’s blog neutral and equal for all issues and prisoners in Bulgaria and specifically Sofia Central Prison. However, I have done this as the expense of not reporting the prisons attacks against myself for my unionism and solidarity with other prisoners, in an attempt to reform the corrupt prison administration, however on Thursday 17th of October an incident…

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Guards’ Protest at Sofia Central Prison

From the begging of May the guards in Bulgarian prisons and arrests (remand prisons) have been protesting a change to their work conditions. Previously they worked 24 hour shifts, then they had 3 days off, now they must work 12 hour shifts with 24 hours off. A 24 hour shift might sound like too much work and the reduction to a 12 hour shift would probably appear to most people as an improvement in work place conditions, however the guards…

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Prisoners’ Complains followed by Repressions in Sofia Central Prison

Early April the director of Sofia Central Prison, Peter Krestev was appointed acting director of the national prison body. Soon after on the 11th April Yanko Vatashki was released from the isolation unit and returned to a general wing. The former acting vice director is now acting director of Sofia Central Prison. Returning Yanko to the general wings was a good beginning for the new acting director, but obviously not nearly enough. On the 11/3/2013 a guard assaulted a Chechen…

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Death of Free Speech

On the 15th of March 2013 the Sofia riot police entered Sofia Central Prison, they were reacting to an alert that the Director – Peter Krestev sent out due to an unprecedented amount of written and signed complaints against the prison’s conditions and indeed the Director himself, with many prisoners calling for him to be dismissed by parliament. After writing a list of wanted changes Yanko Vatashki was immediately sent to isolation after his cell was ransacked. Yanko’s only guilt…

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Attack upon prisoners in Sofia Central Prison

On the 18th of January 2013 Officer in Command (OC) Mitko Spasov, led a brutal and vicious attack upon 2 prisoners in 13th group Sofia Central Prison. At around 2pm Mitko with about 10 other guards ran into 13th group with batons drawn. 13th group at the time was peaceful and quiet; there were no problems or violence before the guards entered. The guards took Martin Pekov a Bulgarian and started beating him as they had information that he had…

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