Enhancing the prisons staff skills on the Risks and Need Assessment Protocols and Sentence Planning to Develop Policies and Protocols for the Implementation and Operationalization of These Targeted RNA Protocols in Prison
٠٣ ئەیلوول ٢٠٢٢
Sulaymaniyah, Iraq, 20 August 2022
Within the framework of the Returning Foreign Terrorist Fighter Detention Program, (FTF), funded by the U.S. Government and under UNODC Regional Office for the Middle East and North Africa, UNODC-Iraq and Vienna-HQ, launched the two training workshops on the ’Risks and Needs Assessment (RNA) Protocols in Prisons and the Related Sentence Planning’ and ‘Developing policies and protocols for the implementation and operation of a specified RNA for terrorist and FTF prisoners to mitigate the threats posed by terrorist and FTF prisoners within the broader prison context’ for the managers and staff of prisons and reform centres under the jurisdiction of the Iraq Federal Government.
Taking place from 14-20 August, through coordination with the Ministry of Justice, the workshops enhanced the development of well selected, trained, motivated staff, and reiterated the importance of interventions for prisoners. They included 61 participants encompassing prison managers, social workers, and prison officers along with a participant from MoFA. The workshops were conducted by Mr. Joseph Jhugroo, Head of the FTF program in Iraq, together with support from Mr Shah Khan, Head of the UNODC FTF program in Tajikstan, and selected experts from Bulgaria, Germany, and Canada. The organisation was undertaken by Ms. Saja Abdulsahib, Project Assistant, UNODC.
The training achieved two major objectives; gaining in-depth knowledge and understanding of the challenges, needs and priorities of the penitentiary systems in Iraq, and supporting Prison administrations to increase their capacity to classify terrorist and FTF prisoners effectively by applying individualized RNA and to follow-up on classification findings in terms of allocation, categorization and rehabilitation/disengagement programs.
The need for rehabilitation and reintegration of FTFs and Violent and Extremist Offenders (VEOs) to be understood as the responsibility of a diverse group of professions working in cooperation was highlighted, together with recognition of the important distinctions between male and female FTFs and that the needs of women in detention should include consideration of their children.
A detailed examination took place of the links between the diagnosis required for structured sentence planning and the identification of individual risks and needs of a radicalized inmate.
The training concluded with several recommendations including the need for dynamic security training and the formation of a Task force of qualified representatives from relevant bodies to work on the development of policies and protocols for RNA in the prison system. Additionally, the participants highlighted the desire for an in-depth study of female FTFs in their facilities.
Through continued partnerships with local authorities, the UNODC aims to strengthen Iraq’s institutional capacity to develop and integrate the relevant RNA instruments into practice, enabling prison staff to perform their tasks in and effective, professional manner to manage and mitigate the threats posed by terrorists and FTF prisoners. International best practices will be examined and adapted to the local context.