A Bunk Bed With Striped Linen Behind Bars
A Bunk Bed With Striped Linen Behind Bars RDNE Stock project/Pexels.com

Venezuelan inmates across prisons throughout the country have began a hunger strike protesting what they describe as dire conditions and unjustified delays in their cases, a local organization announced.

The Venezuelan Prisons Observatory, an NGO advocating for inmates' rights, published a series of videos showing halls filled with both men and women singing the national anthem and other chants seeking their demands be met.

"Inmates across the nation announced they will join a peaceful hunger strike to demand the update of their sentences, humanitarian relief, transport to the prisons where they were originally sent, among others," the organization said in a publication.

They posted videos of the largest women's prison in the country, located outside Caracas, and another one in the state of Falcón. "Inmates feel deceived by the ministry's plans, as they have not provided solutions for their judicial situations," it added.

The demands come shortly after the judiciary announced a series of measures aimed at addressing procedural delays, an issue that different NGOs said is affecting several institutions across the country.

Among the inmates are the 269 political prisoners the Maduro government is currently holding, according to NGO Foro Penal. The organization detailed that 249 of them are men and 20 women, most of them current or former military members.

According to Foro Penal head Alfredo Romero, over 16,000 people have been imprisoned due to their political beliefs and activism over the past 10 years. 9,000 of them have been released but still face some sort of restrain such as being banned from leaving the country or testifying before the courts.

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