UNODC Promotes Community Policing and Youth Crime Prevention in Uzbekistan  

5 March 2021 – At a recent forum in Tashkent, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC),  partnered with the General Prosecutor’s Office and the Youth Affairs Agency of the Republic of Uzbekistan to gather some 40 national level government, law enforcement and civil society representatives, as well as local authorities and other stakeholders from the Fergana Valley to discuss efforts to build community-based partnerships and foster youth engagement around issues of crime prevention and public safety.


“This joint initiative is in line with new approaches we are introducing in Uzbekistan  aimed at identifying and eliminating factors contributing to delinquency and crime at an early stage rather than dealing with the consequences and responding to crime only after it happens", stated Mr. Uygun Nigmadjanov, Deputy Head of the Academy of the General Prosecutor’s Office at the opening of the Forum.

“With the active support of UNODC, the Academy of the General Prosecutor's Office is currently implementing a number of pilot initiatives to conduct research on crime and safety issues and related risk factors and to promote crime prevention at the community level. In the Chilanzar district of Tashkent we are finishing an urban safety governance assessment, which will make recommendations for community safety strategies that are tailored to meet grassroots needs. We hope to further extend such initiatives to the Fergana Valley in partnership with UNODC, the Youth Affairs Agency and other relevant partners”, Mr. Nigmadjanov said.


In Uzbekistan, crime prevention is regulated by a 2014 Law on Crime Prevention. In recent years, the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan has also signed a series of decrees that emphasize the importance of crime prevention and encourage community outreach to bring the police and communities together and enable them to work in partnership to identify and prevent public safety concerns, including at the level of mahallas.

“Work in this area requires cooperation and partnerships at the national and local levels, between government and civil society, between the police and the public. I would like to reaffirm UNODC's readiness to support these efforts and to make available international standards and best practices in this area”, says Mr. Koen Marquering, Coordinator of UNODC’s Criminal Justice Programme in Central Asia.

According to Mr. Farrukh Omonov, Deputy Head of the Youth Affairs Agency, “out of 49,246 people who  committed a crime in 2020, 16,915 or 34.3% were young people. Young people accounted for 22.2 percent of the total number of crimes committed (14,378 out of 64,495)”.

“Given that the number of crimes committed by young people has gone up by 22% in 2020 compared to 2019 when young people committed 11,787 crimes, the main purpose of the forum is to analyse the effectiveness of our work, discuss what factors to focus on and what actions to take in order to prevent the growth of these figures”, Mr. Omonov outlined.

Mr. Johannes de Haan, Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Officer, Justice Section, UNODC Vienna, Mr. Sergei Sidorov, International Community Policing Expert, Ms. Tinatin Bezhanishvili, International Community Policing Expert and Mr. Timur Shaihutdinov, Co-Chair of the Public Foundation “Civic Union” from Kyrgyzstan, shared their experience on international standards and good practices in the field of community policing and crime prevention as well as on planning and implementation of evidence-informed crime prevention initiatives.

“Community-oriented policing is a strategy for encouraging the public to act as partners with the police in preventing and managing crime based on the needs of the community. It means taking a pro-active approach towards security issues and creating an atmosphere that supports transparency and collaborative problem solving, which leads to a higher level of public trust and helps to prevent crime and human rights abuses”, stated Mr. Johannes de Haan, Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Officer, Justice Section, UNODC Vienna.

Forum participants identified crime and safety issues they face, such as road safety and property crime, and discussed related risk factors and possible interventions, such as tackling youth unemployment, strengthening family skills and promoting positive parenting. 

As a next step, a scoping mission is planned that will allow for more in-depth consultations with local authorities, police, mahalla structures, schools and other stakeholders in the Fergana Valley, as a basis for the implementation of pilot initiatives to promote active participation of youth and local communities in crime prevention.

The Community Policing and Youth Crime Prevention Forum was held within the framework of the joint UNODC, UNDP and UNESCO project “Youth for Social Harmony in the Fergana Valley” implemented with financial support from the UN Peacebuilding Fund.

 Article in Russian language 


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