IMPROVING PRISON CONDITIONS AND PROMOTING HUMAN RIGHTS AND GENDER EQUALITY WITHIN THE MINISTRY OF INTERIOR
PREVENTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS AT THE MINISTRY OF INTERIOR
The Ministry of Interior; in accordance with the Constitution of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan; Afghan police laws; prison and detention centers laws; national laws; and United Nations conventions, specifically ones dedicated to the prevention of torture, police misconduct, inhuman cruel punishment, discrimination against women, and the violation of children’s rights; is committed to upholding human rights and gender equality.
Ministry of Interior Orders:
With a team of 375 personnel, the Directorate of Gender, Human Rights and Children is responsible for assessing, planning, and implementing approved plans and rules concerning human rights in prisons and detention centers; complaints of residents by Police; complaints of Police by Police; cases of violence against women; violations of gender equality; violations of children’s right and all violations of human rights in the seven police zones, provincial police headquarters and district police stations throughout Afghanistan. To increase its capacity and performance, the Ministry of Interior is considering the addition of 102 personnel to the 1391 Tashkil for the Directorate of Gender, Human Rights and Children.
As per the Minister of Interior’s 1391 guidance, 20 officers from Directorate of Gender, Human Rights and Children were send to access and supervise human rights conditions in facilities throughout Afghanistan. The facilities visited to date includes 101 Asmayee Zone detention centers, the police headquarters of Badakhshan, Takhar, Kunduz, Baghlan, Faryab, Badghis, Herat, Kapisa, Panjshir, Parwan, Sar-i-pul, Jowzjan, Balkh, Samangan, Nangarhar, Laghman and Kunar provinces; the Directorates of Anti-Crime, Intelligence, Anti-Terrorism; all the fourteen district police stations in Kabul; male prisons in Nangarhar, Laghman, Kunar, Panjshir, Kapisa, Parwan, Kunduz, Kandahar; the female prison in Badam Baagh and the central prison of Pol-e-Charkhi. All of these facilities were assessed and problems were promptly reported to MOI’s leadership for their consideration.
It is worth noting the supervisory committee included representatives from the Ministry of Justice, NDS, the Supreme Court, Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission and the Ministry of Interior.
Under the leadership of the Director of Police Rights, this committee actively investigates human rights conditions in prisons and detention centers. To date, they have visited centers in Kabul province and the central prison of Pol-e-Charkhi.
Additionally, the Minister of Interior has personnally visited facilities throughout the country and heard complaints from prisoners in Badakhshan, Takhar, Nangarhar, Kunar, Khost, Paktika, Herat, Farah, Baghlan, Kunduz, Kandahar, Parwan, and the central prison of Pol-e-Charkhi.
On the Minister’s visit with prisoners in Pol-e-Charkhi, Mr. Zalmai Zabuly, Director of Complaints Handling from the National Assembly was also present. Mr. Zabuly coordinated the efforts of the appropriate Directorates to address the following prisoner complaints:
From the starting of the year until now, 6,177 suspects were held in police detention centers and only 88 suspects were kept more than 72 hours in custody before sentencing. Responsible officials were directed to consider Article 31 concerning punishment law and Article 25 concerning police law. Sentencing documents are to be sent to the Attorney General office within 72 hours.
Conditions in the detention centers of Asmaye Zone 101, Samangan and Nangarhar provinces and the Directorate of Anti-Crime were determined to have good hygiene conditions. The rest of the detention centers conditions were assessed as satisfactory.
Cells at the Directorate of Anti-Crime detention center, Directorate of Intelligence and Faryab, Kapisa and Parwan police headquarters were determined to be too small and not appropriate to hold suspects.
It’s worth mentioning regular inspections are conducted by the Directorate of Gender, Human Rights and Children of provincial police headquarters, detention centers and prisons. To date, they have held more than 500 such inspections.
During the last year, 145 complaints of residents about the police, 51 complaints of police from police, 35 complaints of residents from local police and 48 complaints police loafers were investigated.
During the last year, 145 assault against females, 143 murder, 66 suicide, 118 run away, 21 burning, 118 torture, 71 adultery, 18 rape and three compulsory marriage cases were investigated.
During the year, the Ministry of Interior staff reviewed and provided feedback regarding laws for prisons and detention centers, plans for Police conduct laws, plans for Jirga and Shura laws, and plans for a publication entitled “Police Actions in Cases of Violence Against Women”. Based on these reviews, the staff developed the following policies and actions:
THE MINISTRY OF INTERIOR’S ACTIONS TO ACHIEVE
INSTITUTIONS ASSISTING THE MINISTRY OF INTERIOR ACHIEVE GENDER EQUALITY
OTHER DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN INSTITUTIONS’ EFFORTS
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