UNODC supports Uzbekistan to strengthen the national forensic capacity and capabilities to meet internationally accepted standards

UNODC Regional Office for Central Asia launched collaboration with forensic services of Uzbekistan to improve their capacity and quality management systems to meet internationally accepted standards.

Two major forensic agencies, namely the Main Criminal Forensic Centre of the Ministry of Interior and Khaticha Sulaymanova National Centre of Forensic Expertise of the Ministry of Justice will be supported to obtain international accreditation in line with the ISO/IEC 17025.

The  activities started with comprehensive needs and gaps assessment exercise that has been conducted by the international and national consultants in close collaboration with the national counterparts and stakeholders in November 2017. The assessment aimed at obtaining an overview of the situation in the forensic laboratories of the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Justice of Uzbekistan to apply for international accreditation in line with ISO/IEC 17025 as well as at undertaking a determination of the staff skills and training needs and at ascertaining gaps of the quality management and operating procedures (e.g. method validation, reporting and quality assurance of the testing results). Key findings and recommendations from the needs assessment exercise are used for the development of the Action Plan to prepare both partner forensic laboratories for obtaining international accreditation.  

Based on the immediate training needs of the national forensic experts, UNODC in cooperation with the international training company "CERT Academy" developed and delivered two 3-day training workshops for the management and key personnel of the forensic laboratories of the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Justice of Uzbekistan. The 1 st workshop brought together 14 national experts to study the requirements of the international standard ISO 17025, explain the stages of development and learn how to develop documentation on practical lessons.

During the 2 nd workshop, 14 experts have been trained on the methodology for auditing the compliance with the international standards ISO 17025 to be capable to conduct correct and competent analysis of the laboratory performance. Upon completion of these workshops, all the participants have received training certificates.

These training courses are the part of the "Strengthening Forensic Laboratories of the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Justice in the Republic of Uzbekistan" component funded by the US State Department's Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) and implemented as a part of  the Sub-Programme 4 "Research and Trend Analysis" of the UNODC Programme for Central Asia (2015-2019).