To reform the Ukrainian prisons in line with European standards Ukraine's authorities must increase funding of the State Penitentiary Service by three times, Minister of Justice Oleksandr Lavrynovych told a press conference in Kyiv.

"There are 184 penal institutions with 154 thousand 100 detainees, and these establishments require some substantial budget funding to create proper conditions, accepted in all European countries," the Minister said.

Lavrynovych informed that in 2011 the State Penitentiary Service received 2,603 milliard hryvnias of funding, and the 2012 budget provides for UAH 2,625 milliard. "To bring the institutions in accordance with European standards the amount of financing should be increased by three times. Unfortunately, the state does not have such a possibility for now," the official added.

Lavrynovych also informed that the Ministry of Justice had developed a 5-year strategy for reforming the State Penitentiary Service.

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