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NHC and CILC project: Support to the probation service and the system of alternative sanctions in Montenegro

11 December 2013

Netherlands Helsinki Committee and the Center for International Legal Cooperation are proud to announce that the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs has accorded them the project “Support to the probation service and the system of alternative sanctions in Montenegro”. The project is financed through MATRA/CoPROL – a funding scheme developed to enhance capacities of mainly government institutions in European Union Pre-Accession countries by Dutch government institutions.

The project aims to further strengthen the incipient probation service in Montenegro through intensive training and on-the-job coaching for all relevant actors. Moreover, the project aims to increase the use of the probation service at various stages in criminal proceedings by judges and prosecutors. This will be done by enhancing awareness of the use of probation service in expert meetings, workshops and increasing dialogue between probation services and judges and prosecutors. Finally, the project also aims to strengthen positive communication about the probation service and their work in Montenegro.

The project is developed together with Government partners in Montenegro – the Ministry of Justice, staff of ZIKS detention centre, Supreme Court and Supreme State Prosecutors Office – and in the Netherlands – Stichting Reclassering Nederland and individual Dutch judges.

A strong probation service is a pre-condition for the use of conditional release/sanctioning and community service on the one side and a decrease in repeat-offending on the other side. Both these elements will lead to a decrease in overcrowding in detention facilities.

The NHC and CILC will supervise and manage the project cooperatively.  The program is scheduled to start in January 2014 and end on the 31st of December 2015.