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Iran’s overcrowded prisons leave inmates ‘sleeping on floor’, official admits

NCRI – At least 600,000 Iranians are sent to prison every year leaving many inmates without beds to sleep in, the regime’s prisons’ chief has admitted.

Iran’s Prisons Organization director general Asghar Jahangir said on Sunday: “The capacity of prisons is 80,000 to 118,000. But there are currently 220,000 people being held.”

Jahangir also spoke of Iran’s chronic urban migration problem during a speech a in the city of Shiraz.

He added: “Some 9.5 million people live on the fringes of big cities. These people have left their homes and taken refuge there in the hope of a better life.”

Assdollah Imani, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s representative in Fars province, also told the meeting: “Uncontrolled migration, closed down production centers, and unemployment, are the cause of the prison problems.

“Between 500,000 and 700,000 people live on the outskirts of Shiraz, which is similar to other large cities. We are struggling with the effect rather than the cause, and by building more prisons, we are dealing with the effects.”

Another Iranian official also said on Wednesday that 11 million Iranians live on the fringes of cities.

Nariman Mostafaei, the director general of the Office for Rehabilitating and Organizing Unofficial Housing, told ISNA news agency that 11 million Iranians – or one seventh of the population – live in informal settlements outside cities without having the most basic facilities.

Experts have described ‘fringe living’ as the exclusion of part of the population from the political, economic and social life of the nation, which is one of the richest countries in the region with $700 billion income from oil exports during the eight years of Ahmadinejad’s presidency, according to a report by Iran News Update.

Iran’s prison population has multiplied 21 times to 210,000 since the mullahs came to power 35 years ago, the latest figures have revealed.

The increase is in stark comparison to Iran’s population, which has only doubled since 1979, and means the regime has the world’s fourth highest ratio of prisoners in relation to population.

Prisons’ Organization director general Mr Jahangir had also said in an earlier interview with the regime parliament’s website in December 2014: “The number of prisoners is double the capacity of the country’s prisons. Over 70 per cent of those imprisoned in Iran are under the age of 40.”

According to international statistics, countries around the world have an average of 148 people in prison per 100,000 of the population, but in Iran the figure is 271 per 100,000.

Experts say the true number of prisoners in Iran is even higher than the official figures because those in many secret IRGC prisons all around the country are not counted.

Mass arrests of young people on a daily basis is one method used by the Iranian regime to create a climate of terror in society.