International – COVID-19 News & Views

Better days are coming, dear readers.

But for now, you will find below a selection of international coronavirus (COVID-19) related news articles and statements listed by weeks – the more recent first. Our aim is not to list everything (a mountain of information emerges everyday), just the more interesting items.

Canadian news materials can be found here.

In a few months’ time we hope to delete this section of the website for good. Until then, stay safe.

Your Smile Is Contagious – Travis Wise (2020).

Week 14 – 20 September

AFP, ‘Lebanon lawyer warns coronavirus-hit prison ‘humanitarian time bomb” (AFP – France 24 News).

AFP, ‘Le coronavirus interdit de visite dans la plus grande prison malienne’ (AFP – VOA).

Tim Arango & Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs, ‘For Prisoners in the West, the Virus and the Wildfires Are Colliding Threats’ (New York Times).

AP, ‘Bosnian Serb official jailed for war crimes dies of COVID-19’ (AP – News 95.7).

AP, ‘2 dead of COVID-19 at US prison where executions are scheduled’ (AP – Fox59).

Arab News, ‘La prison surpeuplée du Liban risque la catastrophe sanitaire de la Covid-19’ (AN).

Belga, ‘Coronavirus en prison : 33 détenus et 77 membres du personnel contaminés’ (RTBF).

Wanda Bertram, ‘New Essie Justice Group survey exposes dangerous prison and jail conditions during COVID-19’ (Prison Policy Initiative).

BBC News, ‘Coronavirus: HMP Preston social distancing ‘all but impossible” (BBC News).

Ali Budner, ‘Hundreds Of Colorado Inmates Have Been Released Early Because Of Coronavirus. This Is One Man’s Story’ (KRCC).

Eli Cahan, ‘Ethical or exploitative—should prisoners participate in COVID-19 vaccine trials?’ (Science).

Caxton, Prisoners held in solitary confinement, denied access to lawyers in Covid-19 response.

Covid-19 on a sunny day – Mike Finn (2020).

Stephanie Desmon, ‘COVID-19 in Jails, Prisons, and Immigration Detention Centers: A Q&A with Chris Beyrer’ (John Hopkins School of Public Health).

HM Inspectorate of Prisons, HMP Hewell – successful early action against COVID-19 but easing of severe restrictions too slow.

HM Inspectorate of Prisons, HMP Preston – more ambition needed to increase pace of recovery from severe COVID-19 restrictions.

Hindustan Times, ‘‘One-fourth jails in India report Covid-19 cases, many ‘highly’ congested’: Report’ (HT).

Amanda Khoza, ‘How South African prisons are managing Covid-19’ (New Frame).

Souad Lazkani, ‘Riots Broke Out In Lebanon’s Most Crowded Prison Due To COVID-19’ (The 961).

Nada Merhi, ‘Dans les prisons, « la situation est toujours contrôlable, mais il faut agir vite »’ (L’Orient-Le Jour).

Sylvain Muller, ‘Premier cas de Covid-19 en prison’ (24heures).

Ferai Mutsaka, ‘Zimbabwe government abuses critics, allege rights groups’ (The Washington Post).

Farangis Najibullah, ‘Kazakh Prisoners Packed In Cells, Endure ‘Degrading’ Conditions In Coronavirus Lockdown’ (RFE/RL).

News24, ‘More than 100 die as Covid-19 storm rips through SA’s prisons’ (News24 – Big News Network).

Catherine Norris-Trent & James Andre, ‘‘They sacrificed the elderly’: How Covid-19 spread in Sweden’s care home’ (France 24).

OHCHR, In her global human rights update, Bachelet calls for urgent action to heighten resilience and protect people’s rights.

OHCHR, UN experts urge Iran to release human rights defenders from prison during COVID-19.

Covid-19 and self-isolation thoughts – muffinn (2020).

Julian O’Neill, ‘Maghaberry Prison: Republican prisoners refusing meals’ (BBC News).

Polity, ‘Covid-19: SA prisons report 93% recovery rate, with 299 active cases left out of 6 944 infections’ (Polity).

RNZ, ‘Covid-19: Two Auckland Prison inmates and 20 Corrections staff in isolation’ (RNZ).

Reuters, ‘Sweden to lift COVID ban on visits to care homes’ (Reuters – Saltwire).

Kevin Ring, ‘Congress should support independent oversight of federal prisons’ (The Hill).

Kristen Robb, ‘Aged care residents giving up due to COVID-19 and isolation, nurses fear’ (ABC News).

Wassim Saifuddin, ‘200 prisoners contracted COVID-19 in Lebanon’ (AA).

The San Diego Union-Tribune, ‘Nurse questions medical care at immigration jail in Georgia’ (TSDUT).

Kelly Servick, ‘Pandemic inspires new push to shrink jails and prisons’ (Science).

Various, ‘Règles de visites assouplies dans les prisons : visiteurs et détenus contents, syndicats inquiets’ (RTBF).

Various, Seeking Answers for Care Homes during the COVID-19 pandemic (Oxford Academic).

Various, ‘Five critical lessons from Behind Closed Walls, an investigation into prisons and COVID-19’ (Croakey).

Andrea Woods, ‘Federal Judges are Failing Incarcerated People During the Pandemic’ (ACLU).

Arielle Zionts, ‘Women’s minimum security prison sees COVID-19 outbreak’ (Rapid City Journal).

Week 7 – 13 September

AZAYR24, ‘Covid-19 : Suspension des visites familiales dans les prisons’ (AZAYR24).

Namita Bajpai, ‘Covid-19: 43 prisoners in two Muzaffarnagar jails infected, moved to isolation wards’ (New Indian Express).

Belga, ‘Coronavirus en Belgique : en prison, les détenus pourront à nouveau avoir le droit au contact physique’ (RTBF).

BNN, ‘Löfven: Virus in Sweden highlighted deficiencies in care for elderly‘ (BNN).

Eddie Conway, ‘COVID-19 could be a death sentence for elderly prisoners’ (The Real News Network).

LJ Dawson, ‘ACLU pressures Polis to release more inmates at risk for COVID-19’ (CS Indy).

Guyon Espiner, ‘Prolonged confinement of prisoners could prompt legal action against Corrections’ (RNZ – Stuff).

Fair Trials, COVID-19 death rate in prison twice that of general population.

Apostolis Fotiadus, ‘Greece Presses Case for Closed Refugee Centres after Moria COVID-19 Case’ (Balkan Insight).

FR24 News, ‘Nouvelles sur le coronavirus: le bilan quotidien américain du COVID-19 fait plus de 1000 morts’ (FR24 News).

Philippe Gagnebet, ‘Coronavirus : la prison de Toulouse-Seysses sommée de dépister et de fournir des masques aux détenus’ (Le Monde).

Jessica Glenza, ‘Act now or coronavirus will sentence more prisoners to death, say experts’ (The Guardian).

Coronavirus and the new normality – Mike Finn (2020).

Guardian staff, ‘Queensland Covid-19 hotspots: list of Brisbane and south-east Qld outbreak locations’ (The Guardian).

HM Inspectorate of Prisons, HMP Whitemoor in COVID-19 – priority given to getting prisoners out of cells.

Morgan Hekking, ‘Morocco Suspends All Family Visits to Prisons as COVID-19 Threat Grows’ (Morocco World News).

Tan Si Hui, ‘How Singapore’s prisons are taking precautions against COVID-19’ (Channel News Asia).

IACHR, IACHR concerned about specific risks faced by Persons Deprived of Liberty in the Americas during the COVID-19 pandemic.

ICRC, Ethiopia: ICRC donates medical, non-medical items to 11 places of detention.

InSight Crime, ‘Deaths Inside Venezuelan Prisons Doubled During Pandemic’ (IC).

Irish Legal News, ‘First prison case of COVID-19 confirmed in Maghaberry’ (ILN).

Loop Jamaica, ‘Inmate tells of tense atmosphere in prison as COVID-19 fears grow’ (LJ).

Dara Kam, ‘COVID-19 inmate death toll tops 100’ (News Service of Florida).

Sam Levin, ‘Oregon fires: evacuated prisoners sleep on floor in packed Covid-19 hotspot’ (The Guardian).

MENAFN, ‘Palestine- 7 prisoners in Ofer contracted COVID-19’ (MENAFN).

Covid-19 Hamworthy – Tanya Hart (2020)

News Service of Florida, ‘Inmate COVID-19 death toll at Florida prisons reaches 117, state says’ (NSF – WOGX).

ONU Info, Le nombre de femmes détenues dans le monde augmente plus vite que celui des hommes.

Pete Pattison & Roshan Sedhai, ‘Covid-19 lockdown turns Qatar’s largest migrant camp into ‘virtual prison’ (The Guardian – Business & Human Rights Resource Centre).

Robert Peterson, ‘COVID-19 Outbreak: Two infected Hispanic males forced into general pop. at Seattle federal prison’ (Global Newswire).

Sputnik, ‘Manque de places: les conditions de détention dans les prisons salvadoriennes’ (Sputnik).

The New Arab, ‘Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails test positive for Covid-19’ (TNA).

The Record, ‘To protect inmates from Covid-19, Court orders early release of those vulnerable to the disease’ (TR).

Astrid Valencia & Josefina Salomon, ‘Abuse and fear: Trans women speak out about life in Nicaragua’s prisons during COVID-19’ (AI).

Various, ‘Investigation of SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks in six care homes in London, April 2020’ (The Lancet).

Various, ‘Policy Considerations for Persons Who Are Incarcerated and Hospitalized with Coronavirus Disease 2019’ (Jamma Network).

Emily Widira, ‘Visualizing changes in the incarcerated population during COVID-19’ (Prison Policy Initiative).

Richard Winton, ‘Family of San Quentin inmate who contracted COVID-19 files wrongful death claim’ (LA Times).

Week 31 August – 6 September

9News, ‘Coronavirus: Prison erupts in violence as inmates protest strict lockdown measures’ (9News).

ACTU, ‘Gironde : plusieurs cas de Covid-19 parmi les détenus et le personnel de la prison de Gradignan’ (ACTU).

AFP, ‘Iran: la COVID-19 hors de contrôle dans des prisons surpeuplées, selon une ONG’ (AFP – Le Journal de Montreal).

Algerie9, ‘Coronavirus : levée de la suspension des visites familiales dans les prisons‘ (A9).

AFP, ‘Iran failing to control coronavirus spread in prisons: Rights group’ (AFP – Arab News).

AFP, ‘Plus de 40 cas de coronavirus dans une prison militaire surpeuplée’ (AFP – VOA Afrique).

AP, ‘National Guard Helps Operate Indiana Prison Amid COVID-19’ (AP = WVPE).

Julie Brafman, ‘A quand un nouveau contrôleur des lieux de privation de liberté ?’ (Liberation).

CanIndia News, ‘Covid-19 spreading rapidly in Brazil prisons’ (CIN).


Scott Clements, ‘My Brother’s Not Afraid of Much. With COVID-19 in Prison, He’s Scared Out of His Mind.’ (ACLU).

Eddie Conway, ‘Terror in trailer jail: every single prisoner infected with COVID-19’ (The Real News Network).


Madeleine Davison, ‘Deportation flights helping spread pandemic, says Witness at the Border’ (National Catholic Reporter).

Democracy Now, ‘Honduran Man Dies of COVID-19 in ICE Jail’ (DN).

Fair Trials, Commentary: The response to COVID-19 in Peru’s prisons.

Jamie Hawk, ‘Don’t Go Back – Washington Jails Should Permanently Adopt Practices That Led to Reductions in Populations Due to COVID-19’ (ACLU-WA).

G Plus News, ‘Assam: 2,496 Jail Inmates Test COVID-19 Positive’ (G Plus News).

IANS, ‘Covid-19 spreading rapidly in Brazil prisons, 33,000 inmates test positive’ (IANS – Business Standard).

PK Jaiswar, ‘1,400 released in bid to decongest Amritsar Central Jail’ (Tribune India).

Jimmy Jenkins, ‘New Research Suggests All Incarcerated People Should Be Tested For COVID-19, Regardless Of Symptoms’ (Fronteras).

Kaley Johnson & Mark Dent, ‘Women fight for release from Fort Worth prison. Some with COVID died while waiting.’ Fort Worth Star-Telegram).

Kevin Johnson, ‘Federal prisons to resume visitation seven months after coronavirus shutdown’ (USA Today).

KHN, ‘Visiting To Resume At Federal Prisons’ (KHN).

Kevin Klowden, ‘COVID-19 hotspots revealed the need for prison reform and better rehabilitation’ (Black Voices News).

Coronavirus – Megan Mason (2020).

Eric Levenson, ‘Prison inmates are twice as likely to die of Covid-19 than those on the outside, new report finds’ (CNN).

L’Interview, ‘Covid-19 : L’OMS RDC fait un don à la prison de Goma dans le cadre de la lutte contre la pandémie’ (:’Interview).

Los Angeles Times, ‘Op-Ed: Hard lessons we learned from the COVID-19 tragedy at San Quentin prison’ (LA Times).

Romardo Lyons, ‘Release non-violent, vulnerable inmates! – Stand Up For Jamaica fears COVID-19 outbreak in prisons’ (The Star).

Marseille News, ‘351 cas de COVID-19 sont signalés dans les prisons du pays’ (MN).

Lukas M. Muntingh, Africa, Prisons and COVID-19 (Journal of Human Rights Practice).

Farai Mutsaka, ‘Jailed Zimbabwean journalist has virus symptoms, says lawyer’ (The Star).

NTV, ‘Kitgum prison closed over new COVID-19 cases’ (NTV).

Gaurev Pokharel, ‘Nepal’s jailbirds are at high Covid-19 risk, but keeping them safe is difficult’ (Online Khabar).

Prison Policy Initiative, ‘Responses to the COVID-19 pandemic’ (PPI).

Pallavi Pundir, ‘Inmates Released From Overcrowded Prisons Due to COVID-19 Are Struggling’ (Vice).

Radio Farda, ‘Iran Political Prisoners Warn Authorities About COVID Breakout In Prison’ (RF).

Reuters, ‘Australia prisoners set fire in cells as virus lockdown sparks unrest’ (Reuters – Saltwire).

Andy Sher, ‘965 inmates, staffers test positive for COVID-19 at CoreCivic-run prison in Wayne County, Tennessee’ (Chattanooga Times Free Press).

UN Peacekeeping, UN State Liaison Functions sensitize prison officers and inmates on COVID-19 prevention measures in South Darfur.

Rosemary Westwood, ‘Prison Reform Groups Call For An Independent COVID-19 Monitor, Warn Of Pandemic Stress ‘Tinderbox’’ (89.9WWNO).

Brett Wilkins, ‘Report: Only 7% of Inmates’ Loved Ones Say Prisoners Have Soap and Other Basic Necessities to Stop the Spread of Covid-19′ (Common Dreams).

Sanjay Yadav, ’36 jail inmates who tested positive for COVID-19 shifted to government quarantine centre in Gurugram’ (Tribune India).

Week 24 – 30 August

ABC, ‘Thailand to turn prisons into tourist attractions amid COVID-19 slump’ (ABC).



Halligan Agade, ‘Uganda’s rising prison COVID-19 infections’ (CGTN Africa).

Andrea Armstrong, ‘Hardwired Against Change: Race, Incarceration, and COVID-19’ (Just Security).

Maritza Perez August, ‘Congress Must Pass COVID-19 Legislation to Depopulate Jails and Prisons’ (Filter).

Kim Bellware, ‘Prisoners and guards agree about federal coronavirus response: ‘We do not feel safe’’ (The Washington Post).

Burton Bentley II, ‘The Growing Litigation Battle Over COVID-19 in the Nation’s Prisons and Jails’ (The Law).

Virginia Bridges, ‘Judge may appoint a ‘special liaison’ to reduce COVID-19 risks in NC prisons’ (News & Observer).

Will Brown, ‘Investigation: African migrants ‘left to die’ in Saudi Arabia’s hellish Covid detention centres’ (The Telegraph).

Aaron Bunch, ‘Queensland prisons in COVID-19 lockdown’ (Newcastle Star).

CNN, ”I wasn’t sentenced to death’: Inmate on Covid-19 in prison’ (CNN – St. Louis Post-Dispatch).

CNRI, ‘Situation catastrophique et dangereuse des prisonnières politiques à Qarchak en Iran’ (CNRI).

Alex Dunne, ‘Second case of COVID-19 identified in prison system as inmate tests positive in Dublin jail’ (Dublin Live).

Jason Fagone, ‘‘Disgusting policy’: Prisoners’ families must pay for remains after COVID-19 deaths’ (San Francisco Chronicle).

Megan Ford, ‘Majority of care home nurses felt mistreated during Covid-19 peak’ (Nursing Times).

FR24 News, ‘Épidémie de coronavirus dans la maison de retraite et la prison du Maine liée à une réception de mariage’ (FR24 News).

Judy Greenspan, ‘Prisoners face wildfires and COVID-19’ (Workers World).

Jamie Grierson, ‘Homelessness among prison leavers ‘will rise as Covid support ends’’ (The Guardian).

Andreas Harsono, Covid-19 Spreads in Indonesia’s Overcrowded Prisons (HRW).

Healthcare Purchasing News, ‘Studies spotlight high COVID-19 infection rates in US prisons’ (HCPN).

Benita Kolovos, ’50 Vic inmates, staff contract COVID-19′ (The Times).

Irish Legal News, ‘Irish prison system has first COVID-19 case’ (ILN).

Liberation, ‘Maroc: Les visites de détenus suspendues dans plusieurs prisons à cause du coronavirus’ (Liberation – All Africa).

MENAFN, ‘Punjab to release more prisoners amid Covid-19’ (MENAFN).

J. Edward Moreno, ‘ICE reports over 230 active COVID-19 infections at Arizona facility’ (The Hill).

Tracy Teddy Nayiga, ‘Suspects to be tested for COVID-19 before going to prison’ (PML Daily).

Canceled – Kylie Jaxxon (2020).

Ombudsman New Zealand, Mental health units breach UN convention.

Oscar Ouedraogo, ‘La COVID-19 marginalise encore plus les personnes en détention dans des pays vulnérables’ (PRI).

Oscar Ouedraogo, ‘COVID-19 pandemic further marginalises people in places of detention in the most vulnerable countries’ (PRI).

Prison Fellowship, ‘COVID-19 WEEKLY UPDATE’ (PF).

QMI, ‘Angleterre: une femme en prison pour avoir toussé à la face de policiers’ (QMI – Le Journal de Montreal).

Mona Saanouni, ‘Tunisie : Des sanctions allant jusqu’à la prison pour non-port du masque’ (AA).

Sara D. Schotland, ‘A Plea to Apply Principles of Quarantine Ethics to Prisoners and Immigration Detainees During the COVID-19 Crisis’ (Journal of Law and Biosciences).


Ankita Sinha, ‘As COVID-19 Hits Mumbai Jails, Decongesting is the Only Way Ahead’ (The Quint).

Ben Smee, ‘Children in Covid-hit Brisbane youth prison must be released immediately, advocates say’ (The Guardian).

Evan Symon, ‘Early COVID-19 Prisoner Release Leads To Severe Wildfire Fighter Shortage’ (California Globe).

Peter Tase, ‘Iran’s Adelabad Prison: COVID-19 Risk High, Fostered By Population Density And Government Policies – Interview’ (Eurasia Review).

The Crime Report, ‘COVID-19 Inmate Deaths Exceed 2001-2020 Executions’ (TCR).

Sophie Trevitt, ‘Prisons and the pandemic’ (Overland).

Doug Tribou, ‘Michigan inmates fear punitive responses to COVID-19 in state prisons’ (Michigan Radio).

UN News, Imprisoned rights defenders in Egypt at ‘grave risk’ of COVID-19, warn UN experts.

Various, ‘Calling out a lack of pandemic policy action for prisoners and other vulnerable groups’ (Croakey).

Conrad Wilson, ‘4th Oregon prison inmate dies of COVID-19’ (OPB).

Week 17 – 23 August

ACCA, ‘Turkmenistan: prisons provide bodies of COVID-19 victims in exchange for bribes’ (ACCA).

AFP, ‘Le nombre de cas de covid-19 double dans une prison de Kinshasa en 48 heures’ (AFP – VOA).

AFP, ‘Le COVID-19, un fléau de plus dans les prisons du Brésil’ (AFP – Je Journal de Montreal).

Carolina Ahaumada, ‘Institutional violence and arbitrary detention of young people in Argentina during quarantine during COVID-19 pandemic’ (IDPC).

AI, Egypt: Allow prison visits and other communication for detained defenders and political opponents without discrimination.


AP, ‘Judge: Outside experts can visit immigrant detention center’ (AP – Border Report).

AP, ‘U.S. deports 127 recovered coronavirus detainees to Guatemala’ (AP – Toronto Star).

AP, ‘CDC study suggests inmates should have been tested for Covid-19 in mass’ (AP – Deccan Herald).

Bail Project, The Bail Project Urges Jail Releases Amid Coronavirus Spread.

Belga, ‘Coronavirus en Belgique : la période passée hors de prison en raison du virus fait partie de la peine’ (RTBF).

Deborah Bonello, ‘COVID May Be Killing Hundreds of Prisoners in Mexico’ (Vice).

Marina Bueno, ‘Field Notes from the Inside: Women in Florida prisons share glimpses of COVID-19 lockdowns’ (Scalawag).

Kim Christensen, ‘Faulty thermometers, untrained screeners may have helped COVID-19 infiltrate prisons, watchdog says’ (LA Times – MSN).

Kevin Dayton, ‘Inmates Are Released As COVID-19 Spreads Inside Hawaii’s Largest Jail’ (Honolulu Civil Beat).

Arvind Dialwar, ‘‘No One Is Allowed Out’: How COVID-19 Is Spreading Through Wisconsin Prisons’ (The Progressive).

Mayhill J. Fowler, ‘Prisoners make masks against COVID-19 in Peru jail‘ (Off The Bus).

FR24 News, ‘Le verrouillage de la prison de Covid entrave les efforts de lutte contre les incendies alors que les incendies de forêt font rage en Californie – comme c’est arrivé’ (FR24 News).

Hindustan Times, ‘Covid-19 positive cases in Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram jail rise to 477’ (HT).

HM Inspectorate of Prisons, Short scrutiny visit aggregate report.

HM Inspectorate of Prisons, Continued severe COVID-19 regime restrictions risk psychological decline in prisoners.

James Grierson, ‘Early-release scheme for prisoners in England and Wales to end’ (The Guardian).

Eileen Guo, ‘As Covid-19 cases in prisons climb, data on race remain largely obscured’ (Stat).

Miriam Aroni Krinsky & Marc Levin, ‘U.S. taxpayers already pay a high price to support America’s giant prison population. Now COVID-19 is costing them even more’ (Dow Jones – Morning Star).

Silvia Logar & Maggie Leese, Childhood detention during COVID-19 in Italy: building momentum for a comprehensive child protection agenda (International Health). 

David McNew, ‘Plus de la moitié des pompiers incarcérés de Californie sont en lock-out alors que le coronavirus balaie les prisons d’État, entraînant une pénurie d’équipages pendant la saison des incendies’ (Marseille News).

Mencap, ‘Shocking levels of physical restraint, over-medication and solitary confinement used during lockdown as more people locked up in modern day asylums’ (Mencap).

NCR IRAN, ‘The Spread of Covid-19 in the Women’s Ward’ (NCR IRAN).

Joshua Odeyemi, ‘Nigeria: Covid-19 – Prisons Reopen in 28 States, FCT, Admits 9,900 Inmates’ (All Africa).

We Can Do It – Michael Rhode (2020).

New Zealand Ombudsman, OPCAT COVID-19 report: Report on inspections of aged care facilities under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989.

Antonio Olivo, ‘Judge orders new health inspection at Virginia immigration center with large coronavirus outbreak’ (Washington Post).

Walter Pavlo, ‘A Look Inside A Federal Prison With COVID-19: FCI Seagoville’ (Forbes).

Reporters Without Borders, IRAN : UN special rapporteur urged to visit Iranian prisons holding journalists.

Alisa Reznick, ”We are not animals’: Letter details how Tucson prison became COVID-19 hot spot’ (AZPM).

Morgan Simon, ‘Is This The Beginning Of The End For Private Prisons? The Market Seems To Think So’ (Forbes).

Hannah Steinkopf-Frank, ‘COVID-19 Stirs Prison Policy Around The World’ (Worldcrunch).

Don Thompson, ‘Inspector general faults California prisons for poor coronavirus checks’ (Fox10).

VOA News, ‘Inmates in Peru’s Largest Prison Help Authorities Identify Others Infected by Coronavirus’ (VOA News).

Sonu Wasu, ‘ACLU suing several agencies for alleged failure to protect inmates from COVID-19’ (ABC15 News).