SPAIN : Communiqué from Anarchist Prisoner Lisa in Solidarity with Hunger Strikers in Italy

Dear comrades,
I want to send a strong greeting of solidarity and rebellion to the anarchist comrades who are right now on hunger strike in the prisons of Italy, and the same to all those who are persecuted in the streets.
The need to fight against prisons, isolation and all the increasingly advanced measures of security that apply to all the prisoners and especially to the fighters, supposedly conflictive or dangerous or socially maladjusted, is evident.
Control (social, physical and psychological) as well as punishment and isolation are the basic pillars of the prison system, here and throughout the world. The rules of power are very simple, and whoever opposes them, both on the street and inside the prison, will be punished and isolated from a more social and calmer environment … locked in prison even in isolation modules that are nothing other than a prison inside the prison. Sometimes, they are isolated modules that have no contact with the normal modules; and in other places they are punishment cells that are in the same module, where the prisoners can interact, show solidarity, communicate but also threaten, ignore or stigmatize the punished.

In the Spanish state there is the FIES system (internal file of special monitoring), a system that controls, registers and conditions the political or conflictive prisoners. The FIES III is designed for the prisoners of armed groups, originally designed for ETA and other organized groups, but where they include the anarchists condemned, accused or investigated for terrorism.
Obviously, it depends much on the degree of danger according to which the state classifies us to apply the rules of the FIES to each unit as jail sends us … it can be a fairly light insulation and already similar to the normal closed regime or it can be a super hard isolation and super strict.
In principle, we go through the isolation module in Soto del Real (Madrid). There are 4 galleries – 3 for men and one for women. The gallery of women has ten cells and according to the article that each one has, it goes out to the patios, together or not. The patio is tiny, with wire in the ceiling. There is absolutely nothing there except a basin of shit and trash.
In the cells, the bed, the wardrobe, the table and the shower are built in. It is only allowed to have a few belongings in the cell, at most 2 books that can be changed weekly.
You cannot have “dangerous” objects such as blades, cut nails or tweezers for more than a maximum of half an hour (then they are collected). The commissary runs once a day and has very few products. Requests and letters are collected once a day, so that if one wants to consult or change something, it has to wait for the next day. The light can be regulated from inside the cell, but only if the operators allow it, if they do not turn it on and turn them off from the outside.
The number of searches depends on them, according to the time or reason they want, but there are many, as well as many controls by metal detectors or metal rackets (scanners) each time they leave the cell.
The ‘good’ here – especially compared to the isolation of other countries – is that they tend to be more permissive with communication both abroad (daily calls, vis a vis, booths also in FIES) and between prisoners (talking hours for windows, to pass letters between prisoners …) so one does not live the isolation as strict as it can be, for example, in the countries in the north of Europe.
But if they want to punish someone very much, they can keep them in much harder insulation modules, create galleries of total isolation …
The food is passed through a hole that is waist high and only from there, one communicates with the officials – which is nothing more than another humiliation to try to break the strength of the prisoner.
After a period of interim observation in isolation that usually lasts a few months, it usually passes into modules of the first degree, which are designed to ‘make life’ there for years. But they can also keep prisoners, especially those punished – usually for terrorism – in total isolation, without communication with other prisoners, or apply items of maximum security in cases of supposedly very dangerous people … as always, by punishment or prevention …
In Germany, there are also insulation modules. In Koln, only for men, for example … but also women can end up isolated in these modules or isolated in modules of normal regime. Then there are the cells of extreme punishment, called ‘bunker’ where one is only allowed to have a dress provided by the jail, where one spends 24 hours alone, no window and no minimum connection with the outside … but usually one is not there more than a few days or maximum a few weeks. Even so, the injustice and impotence lived there are enormous.
The isolation always leaves strong aftermaths; it is something that who has lived it will never be able to forget, and the madness and the rage of having lived it only increase. There are many people who do not survive. Everything depends a lot on the mental (and physical) strength of each individual and a lot of support and solidarity from outside.
At the political level, it is more obvious that they try to isolate us, not only from society outside, but also from other prisoners with whom we could create complicities and awareness of struggle against this system of punishment, jail and authority. But every gesture of companionship and solidarity that is lived inside and outside, and every firmness and determination to oppose their isolation, as against all their system of oppression and misery, show that they can never finish us, our struggle and our passion for total freedom.
LISA, C.P Brians 1, June 2019

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