Argentinean archbishop speaks out for prisoners, demands justice and end to delays

.- Commenting on hunger strikes taking place in several Buenos Aires prisons, Archbishop Hector Aguer of La Plata said the constant delays in the judicial process are equivalent to “the denial of justice itself and the privation of a fundamental human right.”

“Their complaints are perfectly reasonable,” the archbishop said in reference to the prisoners on their hunger strike.  “Eighty percent of those who are being held in these jails have not yet received a sentence.”

“In my work in prison ministry I have dealt with terrible cases, such as that of a 50 year-old woman who had been imprisoned three years earlier without  really knowing why, and she has never even seen her defense attorney nor did she even know who he was,” Archbishop Aguer explained.

He said people should not think that everybody who is in prison is a monster.  He recalled that Jesus said in the Gospels, “I was in prison and you visited me.”

The prison problem should be addressed by the government, he maintained, with particular attention to justice, rights and equality, “and with a basic sense of humanity.”


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