Staff of the Ombudsman Office in the Donetsk People’s Republic visited Nikitovskaya Penal Colony of State Penitentiary Service of the DPR Ministry of Justice.
During the visit, human rights defenders inspected the conditions of detention of persons serving sentences and paid special attention to the observance of convicts’ rights by the administration of the correctional facility.
Staff of the Ombudsman Office met the executives of the Donetsk correctional colony and discussed prisoners’ living conditions, cultural and disciplinary issues, as well as medical treatment, education and employment of prisoners in conditions of the penal colony.
There were no complaints regarding the actions of the administration of the facility, as well as inappropriate detention conditions or lack of necessary medical assistance during the interviews with the convicts. By the time of the visit, 232 convicts have been serving their sentences in the institution.
After the inspection was carried out, staff of the Ombudsman Office conducted a reception of citizens who needed personal legal advice. Human rights defenders explained the specifics of conditional early release in accordance with Art. 79 of the DPR Criminal Code. Also, convicts were informed about the order and conditions of movement of a person that have served his/her sentence (including when crossing the state border), in the absence of an identity document (passport), and pointed out the legal grounds for receiving the passport of a citizen of the Donetsk People’s Republic.
As a result of the inspection, staff of DPR Ombudsman Office gave a positive assessment of detention conditions and operation of the colony. However, they noted that an extensive repair is needed in the premises of the club where cultural and recreational activities are conducted (roof, floor covering, partial replacement of chairs). Also, they noted that the walking yard lacked a rain shelter.