Thursday, 05 March 2020

Time: 9:00 – 13:00

Room: ASP1G2


Simultaneous interpretation will be provided in DE, EL, EN, ES, FR, NL

The condition of prisons in most EU Member States are below the standards expected in democratic countries that aim to protect the fundamental rights of every human being. One main question will be addressed: what can be done at the EU level to ensure that prisoners are not left behind?




9.15 – 10.30 Open issues on prison conditions in the EU

Introduction and Chair: Pernando Barrena, MEP, GUE/NGL, EH Bildu

  • Damien Scalia (Professor in criminal and prison law at the Université libre de Bruxelles and president of the committee on prisons of the Belgian Ligue des droits humains)

Law on prisons vs. the reality

  • Adriano Martufi (Assistant professor at Leiden Law School and member of the Italian association Antigone)

EU competence and interest to act on prison conditions

  • Amaia Izko (Lawyer)

Implementation of the Framework Decision 2008/675/JHA in Spain, in particular the case of Basque political prisoners



10.30 – 11.30 The views of prisoners and lawyers

Chair: Anne-Sophie Pelletier, MEP, GUE/NGL, La France Insoumise

  • Amélie Morineau (President of the association A3D, Associations of Lawyers for the defence of the rights of prisoners) and Maxime Gouache (Member of the French section of the Observatoire International des Prisons)

Critical situations in French prisons

  • Jock Palfreeman (Australian national  convicted for murder in Bulgaria in 2009 and freed in September 2019) (tbc)

Solitary confinement in Bulgaria

  • Nicolas Cohen (Lawyer in Brussels, member of Prison insider, former co-president of the Belgian section of the Observatoire International des Prisons)

Critical situations in Belgian prisons



11.30 – 12.30 Challenges for policy makers and prison staff

Chair: Clare Daly, MEP, GUE/NGL, Independents 4 Change

  • Nikos Paraskevopoulos (former Greek Minister of Justice, Transparency and Human Rights and Professor of Criminal Law)

Policies of Inclusion and Exclusion after Prison Release

  • Nadja Salson (Policy Staff at EPSU, Prisons services at the European Public Service Union)

Staff conditions and different prison models

  • Francisco Miguel Fernández Caparrós (lawyer and coordinator of Prisons Area, Andalusian Association for Human Rights (APDHA)) and Maribel Valiente González (General Practitioner in Granada and member of Prisons Area, Andalusian Association for Human Rights (APDHA))


12.30 – 12.40 Conclusions

Kostas Arvanitis, MEP, GUE/NGL, Syriza