Working group meeting on prison matters in Algiers

Working group meeting on prison matters in Algiers
Working group meeting on prison matters in Algiers
Algeria

On 12 and 13 June 2019, the third working group meeting was held in Algiers on the subjects “Cooperation with external parties” and “Training prison staff”. The IRZ organised the event as part of a tandem project, which is being supported by the German Foreign Office and the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection and is running for two years until the end of 2019.

The cooperation in four themed working groups should guarantee that the project fulfils as many requirements as possible. The focus of this meeting was on continuing to work on recommended actions for the Algerian prison system. These recommendations for action are the planned outcome for this project.

Representing the German side at the event on behalf of the IRZ were the following law enforcement experts from North Rhine-Westphalia and Berlin:

  • Kai Abraham, representing Department III at the Berlin Senate Administration for Justice, Consumer Protection and Anti-discrimination;
  • Alexander Gundlach, a prison inspector and lecturer at the training centre for Berlin Law Enforcement,
  • Andreas Illerhaus, Ministry of Justice for North Rhine-Westphalia, Department IV Law Enforcement, Section IV B 3 Organisation & Logistics Law Enforcement and
  • Daniela Mlynek, Head of Employment and Qualification at the JVA Heidering prison in Berlin.

In the working group on “Cooperation with external parties”, this third meeting focussed primarily on cooperation with companies. The Algerian prison authorities are interested in expanding their partnerships with external companies. On the one hand, this should create additional jobs for prisoners during their prison sentences. It can also be important for the prisoners’ job opportunities after leaving prison and help with their reintegration. The members of the working group also talked about the security issues involved in working with representatives from civil society, e.g. the instruction and monitoring of external parties.

In the working group on “Training prison staff”, the experts from North Rhine-Westphalia and Berlin started by presenting the detailed contents of the curriculum for German prisons in the areas of enforcement duties, the development of delinquency, treatment, education and support, as well as communications and conflict management. The Algerian participants were particularly interested in learning about communications and conflict management and there were discussions as to whether this dimension should be developed still further in the Algerian prison curriculum.

Overall, the participants said that the working atmosphere was remarkably good and trusting. They also said that the meeting was very productive in terms of the development of recommendations. Both working groups will meet up once again this year in Algiers. A conference is planned for November 2019 in Algiers to conclude the project.

Working group meeting on prison matters in Algiers

Working group meeting on prison matters in Algiers
Working group meeting on prison matters in Algiers
Algeria

On 3 and 4 April 2019, the third working group meeting was held in Algiers to discuss “The humane treatment of prisoners during admission” and “Individual enforcement plans and classification”. The IRZ organised the event as part of a tandem project, which is being supported by the German Foreign Office and the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection and is running from 2017 to 2019.

The cooperation in four themed working groups should guarantee that the project fulfils as many requirements as possible. The focus of the meeting was on continuing to work on a handbook and recommendations for the Algerian prison system, which are the planned final product for the project.

Representing the German side at the event on behalf of the IRZ were the following law enforcement experts from North Rhine-Westphalia and Berlin:

  • Kai Abraham, representing Department III at the Berlin Senate Administration for Justice, Consumer Protection and Anti-discrimination;
  • Mathias Nagel, representing Department III at the Berlin Senate Administration for Justice, Consumer Protection and Anti-discrimination;
  • Dr. Stefan Cassone, Ministry of Justice for North Rhine-Westphalia, Department IV Law Enforcement, and
  • Ralf Teschner, a prison inspector at the Essen penal institution.

During the working group on “The humane treatment of prisoners during admission”, the participants discussed the medical examination by a doctor during the prisoner admission process, amongst other subjects. The experts from North Rhine-Westphalia had drawn up a check list for the examination, which they adapted to the situation and requirements of the Algerian prison system with the Algerian members of the working group. As well as other chapters on various steps to be taken during the admission process, this check list will become part of the handbook.

In the second working group, participants worked on the chapters on the enforcement plan and classification for the handbook. The two experts from the Berlin Senate Administration had prepared two sample forms for an individual enforcement plan and for updating or checking this plan, which they discussed with their Algerian partners.

Overall, the participants found the meeting to be a success, not least with regard to the development of the handbook and recommendations. Both working groups will meet up once again this year in Algiers to finish working on the final products. Two more meetings are also planned this year for the two other working groups for the project, which are concerned with cooperation with external parties and further training of prison staff. A conference is planned for November 2019 in Algiers to conclude the project.

Meeting of the Reform Commission for the Algerian prison system in Algiers

Second meeting of the Reform Commission for the Algerian prison system in Algiers
Second meeting of the Reform Commission for the Algerian prison system in Algiers
Algeria

On 19 February 2019, the second meeting of the Reform Commission for the Algerian prison system took place in Algiers. The IRZ organised the event as part of a tandem project which is supported by the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection running from 2017 to 2019.

The Reform Commission was established in December 2017 and aims to ensure the implementation of the project and to provide support in developing strategies for reforming the Algerian prison system. The goal of this year’s meeting was to draw a conclusion of last year’s project progress and to plan the activities for the final project year of 2019.

The project work will focus on four working groups dealing with different subjects of law enforcement in Algeria. They will work on the development of a handbook for the Algerian prison system. To conclude the project, a conference is planned in Algiers at the end of 2019 to present the project results.

Representing the German side, the event was attended by experts of the prison service for North Rhine-Westphalia and Berlin:

  • Kai Abraham, representing Department III of the Berlin Senate Administration for Justice, Consumer Protection and Anti-Discrimination,
  • Dr. Stefan Cassone, Ministry of Justice for North Rhine-Westphalia, Department IV Law Enforcement – Section IV A 3 – Penal Institutions for Young Offenders and Women and Social Service, and
  • Andreas Illerhaus, Ministry of Justice for North Rhine-Westphalia, Department IV Law Enforcement, Section IV B 3 Organisation & Logistics Law Enforcement.

The meeting started with a welcome address by Mokhtar Felioune, Director of the prison authority, and Mohamed Montasser Abidi, Head of Section for North Africa and the Middle East of the IRZ. Both sides pointed out that the cooperation is considered as very positive and successful.

In the further course of the meeting, the Algerian and German working group members discussed the next steps for developing the handbook / the recommendations for the prison system in all four working groups. They also exchanged their views regarding the potentials and subjects for a potential cooperation beyond the project close. The working atmosphere in this meeting, like in previous meetings, was very constructive and productive.