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Petak Island Prison, Russia
Transcript of Petak Island Prison, Russia
The island of Ognenny Ostrov is located about 300 miles north of Moscow, on Lake Novozero
Year it was built
Founded in 1517 as a Russian Orthodox monastary
After the Russian revolution (1917) it was converted to a prison to hold "enemies of the revolution"
1997 converted to house life sentence prisoners and death row
Petak Prison Population
approximately 200 inmates that serve life sentence
minimum of 25 years before death row
Year it was closed
Still in use today and is regarded as one of the worst prisons in the world
Name of Prison
Petak Island Prison
- maximum security prison
Originally housed "enemies of the Russian Revolution" during the Great Purge and Stalin's reign
1997 converted to a prison housing life sentence inmates
Not know for brutality, known for its inhumane isoltaion
One of the most isolated prisons in the world
One violation of a rule warrants a 6 month isolated confinement
Isolation drives many inmates insane and breaks their will
The U.S. State Department's 2004 annual human rights report called conditions at Pyatak "extremely harsh and frequently life-threatening
No one has ever escaped
Each prisoner is kept in a small two-man cell for 22 hours a day
The other 2 hours they are allowed to walk in a cage
The prison is located on a remote island
in the middle of a lake
in the middle of a Russian forest
only entrance by boat
"The difference between this prison and others is that in other places, prisoners see the light at the end of the tunnel. Here? It's all darkness."-Chief Guard