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The Nordic and Baltic ombudsmen were surprised by the big number of such places in Lithuania

P6130112After the visit to Lukiskės Remand Prison and Vilnius Correctional House, the Nordic and Baltic ombudsmen were surprised by the big number of such institutions in Lithuania. The Seimas Ombudsmen Augustinas Normantas and Raimondas Šukys aimed to show different types of detention places to the Nordic and Baltic ombudsmen visiting Lithuania.

The director Viktoras Davidenko of Lukiskės Remand Prison answered the questions of guests and presented the prison. The ombudsmen were interested in wellbeing of imprisoned and talked to custodians. The guests also were interested in peculiarities of the Penal Enforcement System of Lithuania.

The representatives of the Nordic and Baltic Ombudsmen Offices also visited Vilnius Correctional House where they saw cells of physically disabled detainees. Furthermore, the guests were informed about the conditions of live sentenced prisoners, showed sport rooms, a shop and a health care center in Lukiskės Remand Prison.

“The Seimas Ombudsmen’s Office started implementing national prevention of torture in Lithuania only in the beginning of 2014 when the Seimas issued mandate to the Ombudsmen Office. We wanted not only to gain invaluable experience from our colleagues about the implementation of torture prevention but also to acquaint them with our Penal Enforcement System,” - said the Seimas Ombudsman A. Normantas.P6130109

The Latvian Ombudsman Juris Jansons after the visit to Lukiskės Remand Prison noted that Lithuanian detention places are almost in the same condition as Latvian ones but welcomed the decision of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Lithuania to evict Lukiskės Remand Prison to other facilities.

However, both the big number of detention places and prisoners in Lithuania surprised the Finish Ombudsman Petri Jääskeläinen.

“Finland has changed the attitude towards convicted persons. The country has changed the Penal Enforcement System that aims to reduce the number of convicted persons,” - said the Ombudsman.

On 12-13 June 2014 the ombudsmen from Scandinavian and Baltic countries visited Lithuania. The ombudsmen participated in the Baltic-Nordic Ombudsmen conference organized by the Seimas Ombudsmen Office.

“The Baltic-Nordic Ombudsmen annual meeting is very significant not only for sharing experience; but also for evaluating the achievements and comparingthem. I may say that no matter that we come from different countries, in most cases we have similar problems, only the way how we deal with them may differ," - said Latvian Ombutsman Laris.

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