The Ministry of Interior (MOI), in collaboration with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) this week hosted a regional workshop on rehabilitation programmes in prisons.

The workshop follows the framework of implementation of the Doha Declaration Global Program, to assist countries achieve a positive and sustainable impact on crime prevention and criminal justice.

The two-day workshop, which was participated by 12 countries, discussed a series of topics on rehabilitation and rehabilitation programmes. The participants also visited the Prisoner Rehabilitation Center of the Penal and Correctional Institutions in Qatar.

MOI Prison Rehabilitation programme

Brigadier Mohammed Saud Al Otaibi, Director of the Penal and Correctional Institutions Department discussed the Doha Declaration of the 13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, and the launching of the Global Program for the implementation of the Doha Declaration, which is financed by Qatar. He also discussed its focus on the rehabilitation and integration of inmates.

According to him, rehabilitation of prisoners should be based on studies and plans and on a number of criteria which should be taken into account – age, educational qualification and health status, type of offense and duration of sentence.

He explained that the efforts made by the Penal and Correctional Institutions Department at MOI, and other civil society institutions in the state, to achieve the targeted results of the rehabilitation process is reflected in the large number of released prisoners having jobs and returning to society as good individuals. He also pointed out the importance of a transition period between the execution of punishment and the prisoner’s return to society, gradually and with enough preparation.

The UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners are the most important single set of international rules which set generally accepted as good principles and practices in the treatment of prisoners and prison administration.

In 2015, the UN General Assembly adopted the version of the rules, which is a reference point on prison administration and which sets out in its basic principles the provision of rehabilitation programmes within prisons to enhance the desire of prisoners to respect the law after their release.