Before New Year holidays I’ve visited my hometown Omsk to provide legal help for prisoners of the penal colony №6. I’m here for the first time as a representative of human rights organization and an expert in convicts’ rights.
Opinion about colonies in the Omsk region is not good and inmates have their own name for colonies: “red zones”. They even say that in the region each colony is like our famous №2 (Yekaterinburg).
Whether it’s true or not I decided to find out by myself. I was wondering how they would meet me. They were surprised and asked if I made an appointment. It was my turn to be surprised if it was necessary.
I communicated with the Chief colony Alekseyev Nikolay Vasilievich through his assistant girl in waiting room who said after him that they needed to check my papers and fix it up with the Chief. Definitely my admission was impossible today.
Well I kept waiting patiently and at the same time I called hot line of Federal Service for Execution of punishment of the Omsk region.
At the end of working day I could manage to see the Chief of colony № 6 who walked away quickly from the colony. I tried to catch up with him and talk.
Nikolay Vasiliyevich said that he’s going to the Prosecutor office to ask for me and it’s better off coming over tomorrow. He added: “Don’t you have New Year holidays?” and “What are you doing here especially if you are from Yekaterinburg and now you are in Omsk?”
I responded that our organization is Russian and convicts need to get legal help before holidays, expiration date of all claims is in two days.
Afterwards the Chief came back and offered me to address with my claim to Ombudsman.
It comes as weird cycle of organization where he wanted to address but the question remained not fixed.
The Chief said convicts need to help before New Year. The girl told me human rights defenders don’t come over at all, only attorneys who make appointments in advance.
As for me I came up with idea how more regions don’t have defender? How many legally illiterate Chiefs across Russia?
Why are convicts kept in solitaries because he didn’t greet the Chief? What about me? The Chief didn’t say: Hello to me, didn’t respond on me claim. Who is going to punish those ill-mannered Chief?
Nobody will get them in solitary. You know why? It’s easy: inmates are not humans. They are slaves. Human rights defenders are “foreign agents”.
We are going to keep an eye on Omsk colonies where the Law is not basic rule for officer.
Larisa Zakharova from Omsk.