CCPR/C/122/D/2181/2012 and complains that the conditions of detention in all of those cells were cruel, inhumane and degrading. The overcrowded cells had no beds or chairs, with only one wooden board that was used for sleeping by approximately 10 detainees at the same time. The author was forced to sleep fully clothed on bare boards. He was not provided with a mattress, blanket or pillow, despite the temperature inside ranging between 12 °C and 14 °C. The temperature dropped to 10 °C during the night, which resulted in him being constantly cold, having difficulty sleeping and suffering from headaches. The cells were very small, with only 1.5 metres between the board and the cell walls, which meant that he could not undertake any physical activity. During his detention, he was deprived of daily walks and was always kept in his cell. The author also claims that, because of poor ventilation, he was exposed to strong tobacco smoke that had an adverse impact on his health as a non-smoker. Furthermore, the toilet was not separated from the common area of the cell and he had to use it in full view of the other detainees, which amounted to degrading treatment. The author also complains about the bad quality of the prison food, which he claims was very salty and caused him epigastric burning. He was not allowed to receive food parcels from his family. The conditions of his detention caused him physical and mental suffering and, taken as a whole, amounted to a violation of article 7 of the Covenant and of paragraphs 1, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 19, 20 (1) and 21 (1) of the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners. 2.2 On 29 December 2009, after his release, the author initiated civil proceedings at Moskovsky District Court in Minsk City against the illegal inaction of the administration of the detention facility, claiming that the conditions of his detention had violated his rights under article 7 of the Covenant. On 11 January 2010, the court refused to initiate proceedings owing to lack of jurisdiction, indicating that national legislation provided for an out-of-court procedure for the consideration of complaints regarding conditions of detention.2 2.3 On 20 January 2010, the author submitted a cassation appeal to Minsk City Court, arguing that the national legislation referred to by Moskovsky District Court was applicable at the time of his detention only, and that article 60 (1) of the Constitution of Belarus guaranteed the protection of a person’s rights and liberties by a competent, independent and impartial court of law. On 11 February 2010, Minsk City Court upheld the decision of Moskovsky District Court, thus rendering the decision of Moskovsky District Court final. 2.4 The author did not complain to the Chairperson of Minsk City Court or to the Chairperson of the Supreme Court of Belarus under the supervisory review procedure, because such extraordinary appeals are dependent on the discretionary power of a judge and are limited to issues of law only, meaning that such appeals cannot be considered effective domestic remedies. The author therefore contends that he has exhausted all available and effective domestic remedies. The complaint 3.1 The author claims a violation of article 2 (3) (a) of the Covenant in view of the failure by the State party to investigate the alleged violation of his rights under article 7 of the Covenant and to provide him with an effective remedy within the meaning of article 2 (3) (a) of the Covenant. 3.2 The author claims that, taken as a whole, the inhuman conditions of his detention — in particular the overcrowded and cold cells, the denial of daily walks, the lack of privacy of the toilet facilities and the poor ventilation, clothing and food — amounted to a violation of article 7 of the Covenant. 2 2 The court based its decision on article 56 of the internal regulations relating to the special establishments of internal affairs agencies carrying out administrative sentences in the form of administrative arrest, approved by resolution No. 194 of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of 8 August 2007. Article 56 provides that suggestions, appeals and complaints addressed to a head of a special establishment should be entered in the journal for the registration of administrative detainees’ complaints in accordance with annex 3 to the internal regulations, and reported to the head of the special establishment.

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