To begin with, might I take this opportunity to raiseconcerns that there appears to be an almost complete media blackout of theevents which are happening in HMP Maghaberry, and that things have deteriorated(since you and I first spoke,) to the point where there are now upwards of 20prisoners involved in a “no wash” protest. This involves either smearing theirexcrement on the walls of their cells or alternatively “stirring” the excrementand urine together to form a liquid which is then poured out of the cell doors,and unfortunately almost invariably swept back into the cells by staff andothers involved in the cleaning of the prison wings.
Whilst I and others are extremely concerned about thewelfare of all of the Prisoners there are a numbers of Prisoners which forreasons of chronic ill health we feel compelled to highlight specifically andindividually.
They are as follows.
Marian Price Mc Glinchey – a female prisoner currently beingheld in Hydebank women’s prison, after being held for over 9 months inisolation in an all male prison. Marian suffers from arthritis, PTSD, anorexiaand is now in constant pain and has progressive alopecia. Information on Marian, see Attachment 1
Gerry Mc Geough- a male prisoner in his 50’s, currently heldin Maghaberry, with chronic and lifethreatening heart failure, who we feel should have qualified under the “GoodFriday” St Andrews agreementand been granted parole on compassionate grounds.
Despite this Mr Mc Geough has had to be admitted to hospital on severaloccasions because of post-operative complications with “Stents” which werefitted in his circulatory system (5 have been fitted to date).He has recently been moved from the prison to hospital under a veil of secrecy,causing his wife and family quite some distress. See Attachment 2.
Martin Corey – a male prisoner in his 50’s currently beingheld without charge or explanation on the orders of Owen Patterson MP,Secretary of State for Northern Ireland who it seems over-rules the electedParliament of Northern Ireland, including the Minister for Justice David Ford.See Attachment 3.
Tony Taylor – a male “Remand” Prisoner in his 50’s. Tony hadhis spleen removed several years ago and still has shrapnel in his body from abomb-blast which occurred just prior to his spleen having to be removed. SeeAttachment 4.
Brian Shivers- a male Prisoner Terminally Ill suffering fromCystic Fibrosis and been told by specialists that he has five years or less tolive (if given adequate medical treatment). Brian has just been sentenced to 25years in prison, effectively a death sentence given his health condition. SeeAttachment 5.
History of Brendans illness “Ankylosing Spondylitis”. Thecampaign to free him: Re: The medical facilities at HMP Maghaberry. See Attachment 6.
Other useful contacts t etc. Included in Attachment 8.
Conclusion:For the best part of 2 years now, Irish Prisoners in HMPMaghaberry have been involved in some form of protest over conditions withinthe Prison. Points of particular confrontation would appear to be the continueduse of forced strip searching of Prisoners and continued controlled movement.These practices continue despite an agreement being reached between Prisonersand Prison authorities in August 2011. The agreement was reached with the helpof outside mediators including clergymen, but has so far not been implementedby the Prison authorities. Apart from the aforementioned circumstances ofPrisoners being incarcerated in HMP Maghaberry several other Prisoners andtheir families have alleged that a system of regular brutality and isolationprevails within the Prison. Recently released Prisoners Damian Mc Laughlin and Colin Duffy have gone onrecord to detail the situation within the Prison. See Attachment 8.
It is my own professional opinion, having studied Medicine at Degree level, that notonly are the Healthcare “facilities” at Maghaberry inadequate, but I believethat they are in fact “non-existent”. For example: The ex prisoner BrendanLillis being given approx. 10 days to live due to being unable to tolerate foodof fluids and the “Maghaberry” Medical staff being unable to even cannulate avein for an intravenous infusion of potentially life saving fluids.Mr Lillis has since been released to the care of outside Medical facilities andhis family.
It is my sincere hope that UNHRW will take positive actionRe: Maghaberry Prison, as to date all other avenues that have been exploredhave proved to be unhelpful.Particularly unhelpful has been Amnesty International Ireland who despite beingcontacted several times about ths situation have chosen either to ignore theconcerns and furthermore, recently deleting legitimate comments and questionsfrom their Facebook page and banning anyone from their page who raises even theleast concern about the situation in HMP Maghaberry.
Bearing in mind that the eerily similar situation in theH-Blocks of HMP Maze resulted in the deaths on Hunger-Strike of 10 Prisoners, Iimplore you to investigate the situation in Maghaberry Prison as matter ofgreat urgency.
Mr Nollaig Connolly O.D.P. M.T.O.
Attachemnt 1 Re:Marian Price Mc Glinchey.
Attachment 2 Re: Gerry Mc Geough.
Attachment 3 Re:Martin Corey.
Attachment 4 Re: Tony Taylor
Attachment 5 Re:Brian Shivers.
Attachment 6 Re:Brenda Lillis.
Attacment 7 Re: Statements from recently released ex prisoners Damian Mc Laugling & Colin Duffy.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Friends.Of.Brendan.Lillis/#!/mandy.mccabe.duffy/posts/2989540852043http://www.32csm.net/2012/02/32csm-female-member-beaten-to-pulp-by.html#!/2012/01/echoes-of-1981-from-andersonstown-news.htmlAttachment 8 Helpful Link to Families & Friends of Prisoners and other contactshttp://republicanprisonersmaghaberry.com/default.aspxAttachment 9 Useful Contact for Northern Ireland Assembly.Emmett DoyleParliamentary Advisor to Pat Ramsey MLA.
St Pauli Maghaberry Awareness Group Deutschland
contact details firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Statement from The Family & Friends of Republican prisoners Maghaberry. 22nd Feb 2012 (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)
- Secretary of State refuses to meet Derry MLA on Price and McGeough prison cases (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)
- Statement from Gerry McGeough on his one year incarceration today in Maghaberry prison – 2/18/2012. (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)
- Statement from the Family & Friends of Republican prisoners, Maghaberry. 20th Feb 2012 (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)
- Statement on Marian Price’s internment and removal to Hydebank (seachranaidhe1.wordpress.com)