HC Deb 14 April 1920 vol 127 cc1680-1

I wish to ask the Leader of the House whether he has any information with regard to the conditions in Mountjoy Prison, and any statement to make as to the decision to which the Government may have come?


I have just received the following telegram from the Irish Government.

"Hunger strike. The following Minute was issued this morning to Prisons Board: 'There are three classes of prisoners at present in Mountjoy Prison: (1) prisoners who have been tried either before (a) a jury, (b) a court-martial, or (c) summarily, and have been convicted. (2) Prisoners who have been arrested and have (a) been before a magistrate and have had depositions taken, (b) been before a magistrate and remanded for the purpose of having depositions taken or for trial summarily. (3) Persons who have been arrested or detained under order of the Competent Military Authority. 'The first class are not entitled to ameliorative treatment except under the rules dated the 22nd November, 1949. The second class are and always have been and will be treated as untried prisoners. In all the circumstances of the case the Irish Government has decided that the third class will in future be given, ameliorative treatment from the date of their arrest until the date of their conviction.'


Does "ameliorative treatment" mean that they will be treated as first-class misdemeanants?


I do not know exactly what it means, but it does mean that they will be treated in a way quite different both from convicted prisoners and untried prisoners.