Prisoner Classification Workshop Took Place in Nur-Sultan

24-26 July 2019, Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan - The UN Office on Drugs and Crime in partnership with the Prison Committee of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan and the OSCE Program Office in Nur-Sultan organized a Prisoner Classification Workshop within the framework of the Global initiative " Supporting the Management of Violent Extremist Prisoners and the Prevention of Radicalization to Violence in Prisons".

A three-day seminar aimed to increase the awareness of the prison staff of Kazakhstan on available approaches and tools to assess risks and needs of prisoner (Prisoner Classification System) in accordance with international standards and promising practices, and to discuss the methodology for further developing the prisoner's risks and needs assessment system in Kazakhstan.

One of the objectives of the Global initiative is to assist Kazakhstan in development and piloting of tools for prisoner classification system, including extremist and terrorist offenders, in accordance with the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners ( Nelson Mandela Rules).

" Properly developed and implemented process of Prisoner Classification System is the cornerstone of an effective prison management, the basis for ensuring prison and public safety, as well as creating opportunities for social reintegration of prisoners. In Kazakhstan, the work on revising the existing classification system has been started including for the extremist and terrorist offenders within the framework of the Global initiative and its Action Plan", noted UNODC international consultant Mrs. Andrea Moser.

The event was attended by prison staff and law enforcement agencies of Kazakhstan, national and international experts, as well as representatives of the international community and donors.

"The process of dealing with returning Foreign Terrorist Fighters requires a comprehensive approach that not only promotes inter-agency co-operation, but the involvement of civil society in dealing with the women and children who often return with them", - said Ambassador György Szabó, Head of the OSCE Programme Office in Nur-Sultan.

The workshop attendees reviewed the current risk and needs assessment of the prisoners in Kazakhstan and studied international standards and promising practices. They also learned the experience of the Prisoner Classification System in Kyrgyzstan, including the methodology and its criminological, psychological, psychiatric, sociological, as well as religious aspects. The workshop summarized with a panel discussion and practical sessions where participants discussed the next steps in organizing a Prisoner Classification System in Kazakhstan.

Mr. Meiram Ayubayev, the Deputy Chairman of the Penitentiary System Committee under the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan, expressed his hope that a country-specific methodology for organizing a Risk and Needs Assessment System would be developed for Kazakhstan based on shared promising practices and the experience of other countries taking into account country's peculiarities in terms of its political and economic situation, national legislation and mentality of Kazakhstan.

In December 2018, Kazakhstan recognizing the growing threat of extremism and terrorism, was one of the first countries to join the Global UN initiative "Supporting the Management of Violent Extremist Prisoners and the Prevention of Radicalization to Violence in Prisons" along with other beneficiary countries such as Tunisia and Uganda. The programme is implemented by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the UN Counter-Terrorism Center and the UN Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate, with the financial support of the European Union((USD 4,7 Mio.)), the UN Office of Counter Terrorism (USD 3,0 Mio) and the Government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (USD 1,4 Mio.).

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For more information,

please contact Ms. Madina Sarieva,

International Coordinator at UNODC Nur-Sultan

at + 7 776 475 7797 or madina.sarieva[at]