The New York Times
October 14, 2008
Thousands of relatives of inmates staged sit-in protests on Tuesday in prisons across the country to protest poor conditions and the abuse of inmates. Hundreds of inmates die each year in prison violence. This has fueled complaints that President Hugo Chávez has done too little to stem crime and improve the judicial system, which often allows people to languish in prison for years without a trial. The protest, which began last week with a hunger strike at one prison, has spread across the country, according to Venezuelan Prison Observatory, a nonprofit group that monitors prisons.