Horrific footage inside Russian mental health institution released

Grainy film shows residents chained to beds and radiators by their wrists or ankles

Samuel Osborne
Tuesday 08 August 2017 11:28
Horrific undercover footage inside Russian mental health institution shows patients chained to beds

Footage has emerged of residents of a Russian mental health institution chained to beds and radiators.

The grainy film, released by a psychiatrist from the Russian city of Briansk, shows several residents of the Trubchevsk Psycho-Neurological Institution near Briansk chained to objects by their wrists or ankles.

The psychiatrist, Alexander Kupriyanov, told Human Rights Watch Russian authorities had opened a criminal case, but were mostly focused on finding out who recorded the videos.

The video prompted several former staff members to come forward, with two former nurses confirming the practice of chaining people with psychosocial disabilities to their beds or radiators.

They also said the practice was used for those believed to be suicidal.

A former kitchen worker said she recognised the patients in the video. She said staff regularly brought some residents to the dining hall chained to each other, and even forced them to eat in handcuffs.

One former nurse said "unruly" patients would be chained, forcibly sedated or placed in solitary confinement.

“Others are practically immobile and the staff don’t want visitors to see them crawling around the grounds,” she added.

The former staff said chains and handcuffs were mostly used in wing five of the institute, known as the "Mercy Wing."

Shackling is prohibited under Russian and international law and Human Rights Watch has called for a full investigation into the allegations.

"Authorities should properly investigate these damning allegations and make sure that people in such institutions around Russia are treated with the dignity they deserve," Yulia Gorbunova, a researcher for the group focusing on Russia and Belarus, said.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in