EU boosts support to Criminal Justice reform in Georgia

 A new programme of support to criminal justice reform in Georgia will be launched following the signature of a financing agreement yesterday in Brussels, by Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle and Vice-Prime Minister of Georgia Giorgi Baramidze.

A press release said the programme would aim to strengthen the rule of law and human rights in Georgia, in line with the country's own international commitments, by “promoting restorative justice, improving prison conditions, or offering alternatives to imprisonment, such as a community work or early release.”
Georgia has made significant progress in reforming its Criminal Justice System in the recent years, Commissioner Füle said, adding: "I am pleased to see that it will also cut down the number of long prison sentences for young people who committed minor crimes, offering them instead alternatives such as community service, vocational training or education."
This new programme aims tohelp reduce the prison population and further promote human rights, building on what Georgia has achieved so far with the EU’s support.  In particular, the three-year programme seeks to:
  • carry out sound criminal justice policies and practices in line with Council of Europe standards;
  • continue reforms of juvenile justice in compliance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child;
  • improve the conditions of convicted prisoners in line with European standards, particularly regarding overcrowding, living standards, healthcare and legal safeguards;
  • support the Probation Service on the rehabilitation and reconciliation of probationers, and by a broader adoption of non-custodial measures;
  • improve access to justice for the citizens of Georgia through a stronger Legal Aid Service and ensuring the independence of the Public Defender's Office.
In their bilateral meeting, Mr Füle and MrBaramidze discussed the recent developments and progress made in EU-Georgia relations, including the need to pursue reforms, the imminent start of negotiations on Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) and the way ahead in the area of mobility. They also took stock of activities within the framework of the Eastern Partnership as a specific Eastern dimension of the European Neighbourhood Policy.(ENPI Info Centre)
Read more
Press release
EU Delegation to Georgia
ENPI Info Centre webpage – Georgia
ENPI Info Centre webpage - Eastern Partnership
ENPI Info Centre - Eastern Partnership Glossary
ENPI Info Centre - Eastern Partnership Video

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