Jordan: Support to Penitentiary Reform

Training course “Key Performance Indicators” in Amman

Training course “Key Performance Indicators” in Amman

EU grant

Team Leader: Torben Adams
Responsible at the IRZ: Özlem Olbrich, Dr Arnd Wöhler

The IRZ has successfully implemented the project to reform the prison system in Jordan. It ended in February 2014. The IRZ was supported by its junior partner “Justice Coopération Internationale” (JCI), which is associated with the French Ministry of Justice. The project had a term of 24 months and a total budget of roughly 1.5 million Euro. The partners on the Jordanian side were the supreme police authority, as well as the supervisory authority of the penitentiary system in Jordan, both of which are associated with the Jordanian Ministry of the Interior.

The project formed part of ongoing cooperation between the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the EU in the prison sector, and as such was a continuation of an EU twinning project to modernise the Jordanian prisons that was implemented by the Austrian Ministry of Justice until the beginning of 2010. The cooperation with the Jordanian partners was intended to improve the penitentiary system in Jordan to such an extent that it is in compliance with international standards and to ensure that it was possible to implement reforms in the penitentiary law.

Improvements were made in both the structures and in the management in the supervisory authority, and also in the individual prisons. Activities included comprehensive training courses for prison staff and appropriate modernisation of workflows and procedures in the penitentiary system. Additionally, transition management for criminal convicts was further developed in cooperation with state institutions and non-governmental organisations. The project partners developed training and employment programmes for convicts aiming to promote post care and social reintegration. This involved private sector and civil society organisations. Additionally, alternative criminal sanctions were introduced in the Jordanian penitentiary system.


Funded by the European Union

Kosovo: Strengthening the correctional and probation services in Kosovo

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Concluding event in Pristina

EU Twinning

Project leader: Dr. Peter Best
RTA: Stephan Schnaars
Responsible at the IRZ: Elke Wendland, Petra Fortuna

The aim of the German-French project was to strengthen the administration in the sphere of correctional and probation services. In this context, particular emphasis was placed on the increase of capacity and the application of best practices in correctional services. This also included the promotion of alternative criminal sanctions, which constituted a focal point of the project. The partners were the Kosovo Correctional Service (KCS) and Kosovo Probation Service (KPS). The provision of the necessary data management systems enabling efficient planning was also part of the project.

The following work results are specified by way of example:

  • Basic training curriculum and performance assessment system for correctional officers
  • Recommendations for re-socialisation and rehabilitation programmes
  • Sensitising legal practitioners for the use of alternative criminal sanctions
  • Feasibility study for a new data base structure (linkage of the two existing data bases of KPS and KCS) and technical specifications
  • Support for the procurement procedure for hardware and software until completion
  • Delivery and new installation of hardware and software
  • Improvement of the connection bandwidth in the country’s entire internal network

The probation facilities in the cities of Pristina, Peja and Ferizaj were chosen for the conduct of pilot programmes.

The project also addressed the legal framework for correctional and probation services. In the course of the project, 25 supplementary statutes to the Prison Act were drafted.

Almost all of this draft legislation for implementation provisions and administrative provisions were passed, and have already entered into force in some cases. In addition, the Twinning project supported the work on a strategy and a plan of action for the correctional service.

The partners from Kosovo showed great interest, and there was a lively exchange between practitioners in Kosovo and Germany from the correctional and probation services in the numerous workshops, training sessions and seminars. The project achieved its project aims, implemented the extensive transfer of know-how and was successfully concluded at the end of 2016 after a duration of two years.


Funded by the European Union


Montenegro: Support to Penitentiary Reform

The project team with Duško Marković, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Justice (3rd from right), and the German Ambassador in Montenegro Pius Fischer (2nd from left) at the concluding event in Podgorica

The project team with Duško Marković, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Justice (3rd from right), and the German Ambassador in Montenegro Pius Fischer (2nd from left) at the concluding event in Podgorica

EU twinning

Project Leader: Dr. Peter Best
RTA: Marius Fiedler
Responsible at the IRZ: Dr Stefan Pürner, Dana Trajčev-Božić

The twinning project was successfully completed as planned in July 2014. It ran for a period of eighteen months, and was managed by IRZ together with the Dutch probation service foundation Stichting Reclassering acting as a junior partner. It aimed to approximate the standards of the Montenegrin prison system to European standards and to develop alternatives to
prison sentences.

Successful groundwork

Two draft Bills were drafted within the project. It was possible to adopt one Draft Act on Alternative Sanctions while the project was still operational. A draft Bill on the Prison System is in the legislative procedure.

Montenegro did not have a probation service before the project started. There is now an office of the probation service in the Montenegrin capital of Podgorica with two trained staff members. What is more, contracts on carrying out community work, as a further alternative to a prison sentence, have been concluded with five local authorities in Montenegro. Several staff members were trained within the project to become probation officers, and more became familiar with the European Prison Rules. Further topics dealt with in the project were the methods of modern organisation structure and job descriptions. Both judges and public prosecutors became familiar with the possible alternative sanctions during the discussions that
were held

The project was substituted after the concluding event by a bilateral Dutch-Montenegrin project in which some of the experts, as well as the project assistant, are continuing to cooperate. Furthermore, the work on the new Prisons Act was also continued after the project had been completed, and both the project leader and the RTA continued to be available to give advice. The project was presented and opened up to discussion at a conference in Budva (Montenegro) organised by the Dutch Embassy in December 2014 and attended by representatives from the entire Western Balkans. The discussions with the judges and public prosecutors were successful. One hundred convicts are currently waiting to do their community work; there are 250 cases in the probation service. Montenegro now needs to take up the challenge and expand alternatives to prison, and to put the new Prisons Act and the European prison standards into practice.


Funded by the European Union