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Extremism in Prisons

Volume 624: debated on Tuesday 25 April 2017

The Government introduced an amendment to prison rules last week meaning that prisoners can be placed in a separation centre if they are involved in planning terrorism or are considered to pose a risk to national security. Those who are spreading views that might encourage or influence others to commit terrorist crimes, or whose views are being used in a way that undermines good order and security in prisons, may also be placed in one of the centres.

What is the Minister doing to ensure that prisoners with extremist beliefs do not oppress other prisoners for their faith?

People in prison convert to religion for all sorts of reasons. As I have said, conversion does not mean radicalisation. It is important that prisons have a regime whereby people who convert are not exploited in any way. The separation centres are one way of removing dangerous people, but obviously education and the support of prison officers play a vital role.