Rights group calls for release of activist who gave birth in jail

Published July 9, 2020, 6:51 PM

by Raymund Antonio

A human rights group on Thursday reiterated its call for the humanitarian release of a female detainee who gave birth to a baby girl in a hospital in Manila.

Reina Mae Nasino, a political prisoner, was brought back to the female dormitory of the Manila City Jail on July 2 a day after she gave birth at the Dr. Jose Fabella Memorial Hospital.

Nasino is one of the human rights activists who are seeking release from detention due to the coronavirus infection in prison. She is facing charges of illegal possession of firearms.

Karapatan Secretary General Cristina Palabay said keeping Nasino and her baby behind bars is “brutally and grossly merciless.”

“As what we’ve feared, Ina Nasino has already given birth while the Supreme Court still has not decided on the petition of political prisoners after more than three months,” she said.

“We can’t let the pandemic take more lives — let alone the life of a mother and a newborn baby as well as the lives of those wrongfully detained,” Palabay added.

The Supreme Court has not yet made a decision up to now after she, along with other political prisoners, filed a petition for their release three months ago.

They asked the SC to release them on humanitarian grounds due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As of June 30, there are 635 political prisoners in the country based on the data of the human rights group.