His Excellency Minister of Interior, General Shaikh Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa met with the President of the National Institution for Human Rights (NIHR), Engineer Ali Al-Derazi, and the Chairperson of the Prisoners and Detainees Rights Commission (PDRC), Ombudswoman Ghada Habib, in the presence of the Interior Ministry Undersecretary, Shaikh Nasser bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa.
During the meeting, HE Interior Minister highlighted the professionalism and the important humanitarian role played by the NIHR, the PDRC, and the Ombudswoman in safeguarding and upholding human rights.
The meeting discussed the recommendations arising from the recent inspection visits conducted by the NIHR and PDRC to the "Jau" Reformation and Rehabilitation Centre, which were in line with the recommendations of the Director-General of Reformation and Rehabilitation.
The meeting also discussed the health services provided to inmates by the Government Hospitals, the revision of the current visitation system and its development to increase the allotted durations as well as considerations for amending conditions related to the visitors’ list, in addition to increasing the allotted daily outdoor time for inmates at the Reformation and Rehabilitation Centre. As for the reduction of calling rates for inmates, it was indicated that efforts are ongoing to coordinate with telecommunication companies in this regard.
HE Interior Minister highlighted the ongoing cooperation between the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Education in providing educational programs and services to inmates and facilitating the completion of their studies at all levels. He added that, in cooperation with the Higher Education Council, 180 inmates have been enrolled in different higher studies programs in different specializations this year.
He noted the success of alternative sentencing and open prisons programs, and the need to expand the number of inmates benefitting from them.
He affirmed that the progress made in developing humanitarian programs and initiatives are the fruits of the comprehensive development process launched by HM King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, who founded these independent humanitarian institutions and enabled them to further advance human rights in the Kingdom, in addition to the ongoing support provided by the Government, led by His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister to implement different reform programs and projects. This was reflected in the performance of the General Directorate of Reformation and Rehabilitation, which obtained international accreditation from the American Correctional Association (ACA) after passing all the global quality standards set by the Association.
HE Interior Minister affirmed the Ministry of Interior’s commitment to continue to cooperate with all institutions concerned with human rights, and to propose and implement different initiatives related to developing the reform and rehabilitation centres, while working on re-integrating inmates back to society.
The Director General of Reformation and Rehabilitation General Directorate also attended the meeting.