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UN Report Confirms Violation of Women Rights in US Jails

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TEHRAN, June 5 (ICANA) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women confirmed in its latest report that women are facing with psychological and physical mistreatment in the US jails.
Sunday, June 05, 2011 6:44:11 PM
UN Report Confirms Violation of Women Rights in US Jails

The reports released on Friday confirmed among other things the story of a former inmate at Central California Women's Facility, Beverly Henry.

"Inadequate access to health services in prison and detention facilities is characterized by delays, neglect, and mistreatment of inmates and detainees," the UN report said.

During her 12 years of being in the facility, Henry witnessed hundreds of women dying due to mistreatment. "I watched 17 women die in one year," she said.

"I've seen things that make me wish the mind was not so unique that we have the ability to store memories."

The facility is the largest female prison and one of the most overcrowded ones in the US, as it contains nearly twice the amount of inmates it is built for.

Cynthia Chandler, director of Justice Now -- a prison-rights organization -- described how due to desperate needs for basic necessities such as toilet paper, tampons and soap female inmates are forced to acts of prostitution.

Further, lack of basic necessities has caused an increase in violence between the inmates, she added.

"People really think, 'Oh the women, they're fine.' No, we're not. This is a psychological part of slavery that is totally inhumane," Henry said.

Earlier, Shahrzad Mir-Qolikhan, an innocent Iranian woman held in the US jails for the last three years, described how she has been forced to undergo horrible conditions and be subject to both physical and mental torture.

Speaking to press tv she described US prisons as a "garbage can," saying she has been forced to witness obscene sexual acts and forced to stay in close proximity to women with STDs. Mir-Qolikhan is now being held in the Veska prison in the state of Minnesota, after being transferred from an Oklahoma jail where she suffered horrible conditions.

However, this is not the first time reports of abuse and mistreatment of human rights has been published in the US. It was, however, not until November 2010 that the country allowed the United Nation to assess its record of human rights.

The US prisons hold more per capita inmates than any other country. Despite having only five percent of the world's population, the US accounts for nearly 25 percent of the world's prisoners.

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