The Independent Ombudsman Office confirms that allegation regarding a number of inmates are deprived from communication or enforce disappeared are untrue

Apr 22, 2021

The Independent Ombudsman Office announced that it during the past two days received a number of assistance requests from families of inmates at the Jau Reform and Rehabilitation Center inquiring on their conditions and requesting to communicate with them. In this regard, the Independent Ombudsman Office followed the statement of the Center’s Administration issued on April 17, 2021, regarding taking security and legal measures against a number of violating inmates who "closed the corridors, refused to enter the wards, and violated the instructions issued on this regard, which led to the disruption of the services provided, including phone calls and health care services of other inmates, as well as affecting the workflow."

In accordance to its legal and professional duty and in response to the requests submitted by the families of the inmates, the Independent Ombudsman Office has followed up on requests for assistance submitted to it by conducting its methodological responsibility which based on evidence and facts and through the means of proof that it relies on, such as CCTV, and other visual recordings (video recordings). A team from the Independent Ombudsman Office visited the Center and reviewed the relevant administrative papers and documents. In addition, members of the Independent Ombudsman Office interviewed and took statements of a number of witnesses.

As a result, the Independent Ombudsman Office’s team established that a number of inmates in different "wards" were rioting inside the "cells", refusing to follow the rules and legal regulations of the Center insisting on staying inside these rooms, which posed a danger to the inmates themselves and to the Center's security personnel and other supportive administrative staff. In addition, such actions disrupted the Center’s ability to provide the normal services such as conducting phone and virtual calls. Some of the inmates responded to the advice given to them by the Center’s administration based on the requests submitted to the Independent Ombudsman Office regarding making contacts with their families and reassuring them of their conditions. Such phone calls with the inmates that willingly cooperated did in fact occur. On the other hand, a number of inmates voluntarily refused to leave the rooms and make calls.

The Independent Ombudsman Office affirms that the allegations regarding a number of inmates deprived of communication or enforce disappeared are false. In reality, the issue involved a number of inmates who obstructed the phone calls which occurred in a limited number of "wards." The rest of the population at the Center in all other buildings and "wards" are proceeding their stay in normal conditions and are using the services provided to them, including communications, normally. Furthermore, amongst the population of inmates not involved in the matter, there are inmates whose families have also submitted requests for assistance to inquire about their conditions which were also able to reach and communicate with them. The Independent Ombudsman Office contacted those families who submitted these assistance requests related to the abovementioned issue and informed them on the outcomes of the investigation.