Seven Days in Solitary [9/15/13]
The following roundup features noteworthy news, reports and opinions on solitary confinement from the past week that have not been covered in other Solitary Watch posts.
• According to the tally kept by the Miami Herald, 19 of the 166 men held captive at Guantanamo are engaged in a hunger strike, with 18 being force-fed. The Associated Press reports that a judge has ruled that the government does not have to release photos of a Saudi Guantanamo detainee who authorities said had planned on being one of the September 11 hijackers.
• In a piece entitled “The Sorry Injustice of the Angola Three,” Slate calls for the humane release of Herman Wallace, one of the Angola Three who spent over four decades in solitary confinement. According to the story, “The murder case is embarrassingly weak and rife with evidence of investigative and prosecutorial misconduct, including the bribing of witnesses and the suppression of exculpatory evidence.”
• The Washington Post publishes an editorial speaking out against the abuse of solitary confinement in US prisons and jails. Referring to the 62 percent decrease in the number of people held in solitary in the state of Virginia since 2011, the story states “Those statistics are a testament to the viability of a solution to the many problems of solitary confinement…”
• NOLA.com reports that Herman Wallace, who was diagnosed with advanced liver cancer earlier this year, has only a few more months to live. According to the story, Wallace “has about two months left to live, according to an update from Wallace released on Sept. 10. He has received oral chemotherapy drugs since early August, but treatment has now ceased…” See Wallace’s full message here.
• The Associated Press reports that The New York City Board of Correction has voted to start making rules restricting the use of solitary confinement at Rikers Island as part of efforts to change the way the department uses isolation on youth and people with mental illness.
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