Prisoners denied AIDS drugs

May 24, 2013, 11:47 AM EDT
Demonstrators march through the streets calling for the international community to make AIDS drugs available to all, near the venue of the 16th International AIDS meeting in Toronto on August 13, 2006.
AP/Geoff Robins

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — A Zimbabwean human rights activist says he wants the nation's highest court to order prison authorities to ensure suspects in jail can receive their life-prolonging HIV/AIDS medications.

Douglas Muzanenhamo said in court documents Friday he was denied anti-retroviral drugs when detained for a month in 2011 on treason charges. He was acquitted of involvement in an allegedly subversive meeting that studied upheavals in North Africa known as the Arab Spring.

Muzanenhamo said he was infected with the AIDS virus 18 years ago. He said police and prison officers stopped him receiving daily medication and his immune system rapidly deteriorated.

He said the denial of vital drugs to suspects is "cruel and inhuman" and endangers lives in breach of basic prisoner rights.

No date has been set for a court ruling.