Rome, January 8 - Italian President Giorgio Napolitano said Tuesday Italy should be ashamed by the condemnation of its prison system from the European Court of Human Rights. Earlier Tuesday, the court condemned Italy for inhumane and degrading treatment of prisoners by detaining them in crammed cells. The judgement is a call for Italy to improve conditions, said Napolitano, "and is a mortifying confirmation of the inability of our state to ensure basic rights of inmates awaiting trial and the execution of sentence". The president cited prison conditions in his end-of-year address to the nation on December 31, calling for alternative penalties to jail time to ease the "anguished reality" of an "uncivilised situation that must be uprooted".
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di Angelo Biscardi