British Government bids to run Saudi prisons

The British government is currently struggling to manage a prison crisis, but that has not stopped it from bidding to run Saudi Arabia’s prisons

Saudi Arabia's flag

Source: Flickr


According to the Guardian, the British government has launched a bid to run prison services in Saudi Arabia, through a state owned profit-making arm called Just Solutions International (JSi).

The government has said that the contract aims to, “conduct a training needs analysis across all the learning and development programmes within the Saudi Arabian prison service”. The ministry insisted that everything had been cleared by the Foreign Office and the local embassy, and that a human rights assessment had been completed.

Many human rights groups have raised concerns about Saudi Arabia’s record of public beheadings, floggings and other human rights violations.


A profitable “social enterprise” 

Just Solutions International (JSi) describes itself as a “social enterprise” that aims to provide:

“… a range of solutions across the justice system, from policing through courts to prisons and community sentence delivery…[with] a particular focus on reducing re-offending and recidivism”

JSi estimates it will make approximately half a million pounds, to re-invest in the National Offender Management Service (NOMS), which runs prison services in England and Wales. However, it is difficult to verify this claim when JSi’s accounts are private.

JSi is also setting up a probation service in Macedonia and bidding for a contract to build a prison in Oman, another country with reported human rights violations.


TWITTER: @prisonwatchuk 


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