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Preventing Violent Extremism in Prisons

Supporting the Management of Violent Extremist Prisoners and the Prevention of Radicalisation to Violence in Prisons is a four-year (2018-2021) joint initiative of UNODC and the UN Counter-Terrorism Centre (UNCCT), implemented in partnership with the UN Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (UNCTED).

The three beneficiary countries - Uganda, Kazakhstan and Tunisia - have experienced the direct consequences of terrorist attacks and recognize the risk of radicalization in prisons as a means of furthering violent extremist agendas.

Violent extremism and radicalization in prisons is of increasing concern to the international community.

It presents specific technical challenges to Member States, including the ability to protect against, and disengage prisoners from ideologically-based violence.

The USD 9 million initiative is co-funded by the European Union, UNCCT and the Netherlands.

The global joint initiative focuses on strengthening the capacity of three beneficiary countries to address challenges posed by violent extremist prisoners in full compliance with the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treat of Prisoners (the Nelson Mandela Rules) and other relevant international standards and norms, including from a gender perspective.

Activities

The global objective is to contribute to strengthening the resilience of societies against violent extremism and radicalisation to violence while respecting human rights standards. The specific objectives are:

  • To prevent the progression to violent extremism (focusing on those prisoners who may be vulnerable), and
  • To effectively manage violent extremist prisoners (focusing on those prisoners who have embraced violent extremism), while respecting human rights standards.

Resources

Brochure: Preventing the Spread of Violent Extremism in the Prison Context

The United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners (2017)

Assessing Compliance with the Nelson Mandela Rules: A Checklist for Internal Inspection Mechanisms (2017)

Handbook on the Management of Violent Extremist Prisoners and the Prevention of Radicalization to Violence in Prisons (2016)

See the full list of UNODC handbooks and tools here.

More information

Email: unodc-easternafrica@un.org