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Nicosia Prison, Cyprus

Volume 440: debated on Wednesday 23 July 1947

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asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he has ordered an immediate inquiry into conditions in the Nicosia central prison and changes in the personnel in charge of this prison; and what other action he has taken, in view of the death on 7th July of one inmate and the recent hunger strike of 39 other inmates.

The Governor of Cyprus reports that seven prisoners went on hunger strike on 7th July demanding transfer to another part of the prison, and that 39 others struck for one day only. One inmate, who had been under treatment for some time with gastric trouble, died on 9th July but his death was quite unconnected with the hunger strike. An inquest will be held on 24th July. The Governor states that the prison is visited regularly by a statutory Board, the last visit having been on 4th July. There have been no recent adverse reports by the Board. The Director of Medical and Health Services carried out a detailed inspection on 15th July. He reported favourably on the running of the prison and feeding arrangements, and stated that the reasons given by striking convicts for their action were unsubstantial. In the circumstances I do not consider that a further special inquiry is called for.