On 7 November, the OSCE Office in Baku opened a computer education centre in a correctional facility for youth in Baku. The initiative is part of an ongoing project of the OSCE Office and Azerbaijan's Ministry of Justice that aims at promoting juvenile justice reform in the country. "The justice system for youth offenders cannot be administered without a strong element of education and social welfare," said Ambassador Maurizio Pavesi, Head of the OSCE Office.
"I hope this education centre will help youth offenders reintegrate into society after their release and assist them with becoming law-abiding adults," he added.
Primary focus of the education centre is to take a long-term approach to the education of juvenile convicts, equipping them with new skills and reducing their hostility towards society. The project includes the establishment of an electronic library and systematic training courses on basic computer skills to improve the young people's education. In addition, trainers will periodically organize interactive role-playing games.
The project is implemented in co-operation with the local NGO, Prison Watch Public Association. Together with other international organizations and national NGOs, the OSCE Office currently runs several initiatives to assist the Azerbaijani Government in its efforts to modernize and restructure the juvenile justice sector.