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Ombudsperson’s National Preventive Mechanism published the Report regarding the Monitoring of Correctional Centre in Lipjan

Ombudsperson’s National Preventive Mechanism (NPM) has published today the Report with Recommendations, related to the visit conducted to the Detention Centre in Lipjan (DCL) on September 7 and October 19, 2016, which has been delivered to responsible authorities.

DCL was built in 2003 (was under UNMIK management at that time), while in September 2004 was closed due to some technical reasons. Later on it has been renovated and was reopened in October 2006 and functions under the management of the Ministry of Justice, actually Central Directory. DCL accommodates pretrial detainees and a small number of convicted persons who are placed in a separate ward.

NPM in the Report ascertains that the conditions where the detained persons are incarcerated are good, while some of DCL premises, where the pretrial detainees are placed, water seeped in some cells and because of that they need painting, while bathrooms and toilettes were generally in good condition. During the visit no overpopulation has been witnessed neither among convicted nor pretrial detainees. Regarding DCL Directory notification about closing of this Centre and accommodation of detainees in the new facility in Hajvali, NPMT will monitor this situation and will seek updated information from competent authorities.

The Report encompasses also specific recommendations as per food, contact with outside, admission procedures as well as procedures of lodging complaints.

As per health care, NPM reiterates in the Report that the responsibility for healthcare in the Correctional Service was transferred from Ministry of Justice to Ministry of Health in July 2013. During the visit it has been witnessed that the premises where the health services are provided are not suitable and are pretty small. Furthermore, the Report points out also the concern of the medical personnel related to the delays of responses by courts on the cases of recommendations submitted and submissions for court permits to send detainees and convicted persons for treatment outside DCL. More ever, medical personnel and Directory expressed their concern because of the fact that detainees with mental problems are accommodated in DCL due to the lack of space for accommodation in Forensic Psychiatry Institute or in another adequate place. Ombudsperson’s NPMT recommends relevant authorities to take necessary actions for accommodation of these persons in special establishments in compliance with European Prison Rules adopted by Council of Europe and Law on Execution of Penal Sanctions.

Additionally, NPMT recommends that relevant authorities should take serious actions to enable such systematic screenings in order to detect such diseases on time and to conduct comprehensive screening on the newly-arrived persons as well as encourages an attitude and practice of non-presence of security officers during the administration of medical services

NPMT hails the stand of Directory of Detention Centre of Lipjan that self-injury is not to be considered disciplinary sanction, having in consideration that self-injury is not included in the group of disciplinary sanctions set forth by Article 102 of Law on Execution of Penal Sanctions.

During the visit made to this center, NPMT received no complaints from detainees and convicted persons concerning ill-treatment and excessive use of force by the correctional officers of this Centre. In addition, during the visit made, the monitoring team received no complaints about violence among the persons accommodated in this Centre, neither in the part where detainees nor in the part where convicted persons are accommodated.

NPMT states that during their visit to the Detention Centre in Lipjan, the personnel of Correctional Service and personnel of Prison’s Health Department provided the monitoring team with full cooperation. The team without any delay had access to all places that the team wanted to visit. The team was provided with all necessary information in order to accomplish their task and talks with convicted and the detained persons, without the presence of correctional officers or other personnel, were enabled.

Ombudsperson’s NPMT through this Report has addressed respective recommendations to the Ministry of Justice, Correctional Service of Kosovo and the Ministry of Health.
The Report from monitoring of Detention Centre in Lipjan in its fill form is available for the public on OI official web page and is disseminated to media as well.
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