India and Somalia on 1 August 2017 signed a bilateral agreement for the transfer of sentenced persons. The move is step forward in deepening humanitarian cooperation between the two nations.
Signing the agreement with Somalia will facilitate the Indian prisoners imprisoned in Somalia or vice-versa to be near to their families, for serving remaining part of their sentence. The step will also facilitate their social rehabilitation.
The agreement was signed between External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Foreign Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia Yusuf Garaad Omar.
The Foreign Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia Yusuf-Garaad Omar arrived in New Delhi on 31 July 2017 on a five-day visit at the invitation of Sushma Swaraj. This is his first visit to India since he assumed office earlier in 2017.
• Prior to 2004, there was no domestic legislation under which foreign prisoners could be transferred to the country of their origin to serve the remaining part of their sentence.
• There was also no provision for the transfer of prisoners of Indian origin convicted by a foreign court to serve their sentence in India. The transfer of such prisoners to their own native countries can help in facilitating their social rehabilitation.
• Therefore, the Repatriation of Prisoners Act, 2003 was enacted for achieving the above purpose.
• For achieving the objectives of the Act, a treaty/agreement is required to be signed with countries having mutual interest with us on this matter.
• The said treaty/agreement is required to be notified in the Official Gazette.
Who: India and Somalia
When: 1 August 2017
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