The 21st Meeting for the Heads of Punitive and Correctional Institutions and the Security Media Committee in the GCC concluded on Thursday in Riyadh. The attendees called for organizing a workshop to allow all parties to take advantage of the UAE’s experience in implementing the Standard Minimum Rules for the treatment of prisoners (SMR) in Punitive and Correctional Institutions nationwide.
A delegation from the UAE, headed by Brigadier Dr. Yusuf Rashed Al Hamidi, Head of the Policies and Standards Department at the General Directorate of Punitive and Correctional Establishments at the Ministry of Interior, had left to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to take part in the meeting that was held between May 30 and June 2, in the Saudi Capital, Riyadh. The meeting was chaired by Major General Ibrahim bin Mohamed Al Hamzi, Director General of Prisons in KSA and Head of the Saudi delegation.
A number of recommendations were issued after the meeting, notably benefiting from member states’ experience and the different relevant mechanisms, plans and programs implemented during the GCC Inmate Week (2014-2015), to be used as reference for future programs and plans.
The meeting reviewed a number of potential slogans submitted by member states. Participants in the meeting agreed on the dates for the upcoming GCC Inmates Weeks; December 24, 2017 and December 23, 2018. They also agreed on submitting the selected slogan for the GCC Inmates Week for 2017 and 2018 ‘Towards a Bright Future’, to be approved at the next meeting of the GCC Ministers of Interior.

Attendees also called for producing a joint awareness documentary film in collaboration with the Security Media Committee. They also advised Security Media committees at the Correctional and Punitive Establishments to take part in the field visits to examine other countries’ experiences in this field.

Upon reviewing the draft project to study the Standard Minimum Rules for the treatment of prisoners (SMR) submitted by the UAE and KSA, participants in the meeting agreed to organize a workshop to establish the Standard Minimum Rules for the treatment of prisoners (SMR) in the UAE. They also approved the Bangkok Rules, also known as "The United Nations Rules for the Treatment of Women Prisoners and Non-custodial Measures for Women Offenders", taking into account that they align with  the Islamic principles and social values in GCC States. They also approved the proposal made by the Kuwaiti representative to call the project the ‘GCC Charter for Inmates Treatment at Correctional and Punitive Establishments’.

The meeting’s recommendations highlighted the need to make repeated visits to the rehabilitation treatment center at the Correctional Establishments’ Complex in Kuwait. The visits would reinforce the experience of countries that lack such centers, and provide a rich experience and added value to countries that already have provide rehabilitation treatment for inmates. Participants in the meeting called for promoting the exchange of visits and expertise among member states. The KSA representative invited the attendees to visit the Prisons Training Center in Jeddah at their convenience.

The meeting tackled the training centers in member states. The attendees noted that most countries - such as the UAE, the KSA and Kuwait – have established private centers to train female and male staff members; and that some member states provide training for their personnel at training centers affiliated to the Ministry of Interior, and organize training programs within the Correctional and Punitive Establishments.

The UAE delegation included Colonel Mubarak Khalfan Al Rizzi, Head of the Correctional and Punitive Establishments Department in Ajman; Major Dr. Saif Salem Zaid, Head of the Correctional and Punitive Establishments Department in Umm Al Quwain; and Captain Abdul Muttalib Ahmed Al Hammadi, Head of the Institutional Reputation Management Center at the Security Media Department at the General Secretariat of the Office of H.H Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior.
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