In the latest personal testimony on the cruelty of solitary confinement, one of the American hikers who was held hostage in Iran details how the conditions at California's Pelican Bay State Prison are at least as bad, and arguably even worse, than those he experienced in Iran. Inmates at Pelican Bay have been isolated for as long as 42 years, even as Physicians for Human Rights and other human rights organizations all call the practice torture.
For victims fleeing torture or persecution, gaining the sanctuary of asylum in the US often requires rigorous science-based assessment, experts said at a two-day training workshop at AAAS.
Immigrants in detention facilities around the United States are often subjected to punitive and long-term solitary confinement and denied meaningful avenues of appeal, according to an investigation by PHR and Heartland Alliance’s National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC).
PHR and other right groups urge UN member states to adopt resolutions aimed at preventing statelessness. The two resolutions provide for an avenue for women to secure nationality for their families and remove barriers that keep women and families from enjoying the benefits of nationality.
Christy Fujio, Asylum Program Director at PHR, expresses concern in a recent Lancet article at reports emerging from Iran indicating the government is denying medical care to political prisoners. “The Iranian Government wants to break peoples' spirits, they want to set an example”, she said. “They do this overtly through torture, but they also do it more subtly by denying care and allowing people to suffer from their injuries.”