Deep-rooted problem of criminal subculture conducive to ill-treatment

2 Dec, 2022
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The ill-treatment and torture section of the EU-Georgia Association Agenda (2021-2027), under short-term priorities, requires the Government of Georgia to “[e]nsure the implementation of the relevant anti-torture Action Plans and continue taking further measures to combat ill-treatment and torture, and step up efforts in order to combat impunity.” The Agenda (section on Justice) also prioritizes “[s]tep[ping] up implementation of the crime prevention and penitentiary strategy, notably by applying rehabilitation and re-socialization approaches in the Penitentiary, Crime Prevention, and Probation Systems and after release.” However, the existence of a deep-rooted criminal subculture within Georgia’s penitentiaries renders both combating ill-treatment as well as any meaningful rehabilitation efforts rather ineffective. This significant challenge and an outstanding problem facing the system has not been explicitly mentioned in the Agenda, tentatively due to the failure of the Georgian authorities to acknowledge it.

Tsira Chanturia – On behalf of the Penal Reform International