US News: A former Black Panthers activist, having spent 43 years in isolation, died

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ARCHHIVE - Albert Woodfox poing levé, en arrivant sur scène lors de sa première apparition publique au Ashe Cultural Arts Center avec Parnell Herbert, à droite, à la Nouvelle-Orléans, vendredi 19 février 2016, après sa libération du pénitencier d'État de Louisiane à Angola. © Max Becherer Archhive - Albert Woodfox Fist raised, arriving on stage during his first public appearance at Ashe Cultural Arts Center with Parnell Herbert, in Right, in New Orleans, Friday, February 19, 2016, after his release from the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola.

After being locked up in isolation for 43 years, the African-American Albert Woodfox, former militant of Black Panthers , died Thursday, August 4, six years after his release. The fate of this detainee, cloistered more than half of his life in a tiny cell for a murder he has always denied, had become the symbol of the trades of the American prison universe.

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At 75 years old, he died of complications linked to the COVVID, wrote his lawyer George Kendall. "There is a huge hole in the sky tonight" , he added on Twitter. Sentenced for armed robbery, Albert Woodfox was detained at the Angola penitentiary, a Louisiana prison at the disaster reputation, when a white goalkeeper had been killed during a riot. Accused of this murder despite his denials, he was placed in isolation in 1972, like two other detainees, Herman Wallace and Robert King.


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Inhuman treatment

The three men were then militants of black panthers, movement to fight against racial discrimination in the 1960s and 70s in the United States. Nicknamed "The three of Angola", they had stayed in solitary detention for decades, despite campaigns in their favor carried in particular by Amnesty International . Robert King was finally released in 2001. Herman Wallace in 2013, but he had cancer and died three days later. Albert Woodfox was only released until 2016.

Isolation detention, which amounts to being alone in a narrow cell 23 hours a day, is a lot of some 80,000 prisoners in the United States, and number of 'Between them are imprisoned for several years. Activists for reforms of the prison system judge that it is a inhuman treatment, research having shown that depriving an individual of visual stimulation, interactions, natural light or physical activity can modify the structure of His brain in the space of a few days.

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