Welsh language speaker alleges discrimination at Britain’s largest prison

A Welsh language speaker has alleged he and others are being discriminated against for speaking Welsh in HMP Berwyn. Prison campaigners, grassroots activists and Welsh language campaigners are also speaking out about this. Welsh independence movement Undod said: Undod and Prisoner Solidarity Network are campaigning together to stop the persecution of Welsh language speakers at HMP Berwyn. Prisoner Solidarity Network has been made aware of the ongoing harassment and separation of first language Welsh speakers by staff at HMP Berwyn in North Wales. Allegations of language discrimination Rhodri Cynfor ab Eilian is a prisoner in HMP Berwyn and The Canary spoke to his sister. Speaking in Welsh translated…

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What 2021 might hold for those in prison

It’s apparent that nothing this year could prompt a serving prisoner to raise a toast with their blue jail-issue plastic mug. This bleak conclusion might be rooted in the fact that prisoners are dying from failures to protect against a deadly global virus, or that men suffering from depression are being punished for self-harming, or that indeterminate sentences (IPPs) are still causing widespread misery and suffering (there is an increased risk of suicide for any IPP prisoner). The conditions have prompted a former prisons minister to speak out; he described our prisons as “the most shocking failure in British civilisation”. Dissatisfaction has also, within the last few weeks,…

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Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe ‘relieved’ at avoiding prison after court hearing

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has expressed her relief at not being sent back to prison after appearing before a court in Iran, according to her family.The 42-year-old British-Iranian dual national was told she would be returned to Evin prison in Tehran following Monday’s hearing, but it was adjourned before she could put forward a defence, her husband Richard Ratcliffe said.She has been detained in Iran since 2016, when she was sentenced to five years in prison over allegations, which she denies, of plotting to overthrow the Iranian government. Free Nazanin campaign can confirm that today (Monday 2 November) Nazanin was taken to Judge Salavati’s Revolutionary Court on charges of spreading…

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JIHADI JAILED: Sicko Who Plotted to BEHEAD Soldier Locked Up for LIFE After Attempted Killing of Prison Officer   

A SICK Jihadi terrorist has been handed a life sentence after trying to murder a prison guard in a jihadist attack behind bars.Brusthom Ziamani, 25, is five years into a 19-year sentence for a 2014 plot to behead a soldier inspired by the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby.He and fellow Muslim convert Baz Hockton, 26, who was radicalised in jail, launched a terror attack at maximum security HMP Whitemoor in Cambridgeshire on January 9.Prison officer Neil Trundle was left covered in blood after he was targeted by the pair armed with makeshift bladed weapons and wearing fake suicide belts as they shouted: “Allahu Akbar”.Nurse Jayle Cowles and prison…

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This time last year, a baby died in prison. It’s urgent we demand all pregnant prisoners are released.

Disclaimer: the author is a member of Shoal Collective, one of the signatories to the statement referred to in this piece. In June 2020, a newborn baby died in Styal prison. The mother was refused medical care, and had been complaining of severe pain for days. Disgracefully, this was the second death of a baby in under a year in UK prisons: in September 2019, a newborn baby also died in Bronzefield prison. The woman gave birth alone at night in her prison cell. Now campaigners are urgently calling for the release of all pregnant prisoners, saying that they are “outraged” and “broken-hearted” by the babies’ deaths. Why…

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Concerns grow for the welfare of a Palestinian activist on hunger strike in a Belfast prison

As reported by The Canary, republican prisoners went on hunger strike inside Maghaberry prison in Belfast on 16 September. This was to show solidarity with fellow prisoner and Palestinian activist Dr Issam Hijjawi-Bassalat, who began his hunger strike on the same date. Now the political activist group Scotland Against Criminalising Communities (SACC) says it: is becoming increasingly concerned for the welfare of Dr Issam Hijjawi Bassalat. Hunger strike support On 26 September, the Irish Republican Prisoners Welfare Association (IRPWA) marched to the gates of Maghaberry. The march followed a whiteline picket in west Belfast in support of the prisoners’ hunger strike. At the gates of the prison at…

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