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Australia signs transfer of prisoners treaty with United Arab Emirates

Media Release

Today, I signed an important treaty with the United Arab Emirates’ Foreign Minister, His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, in Canberra to allow for the transfer of prisoners between our countries.

The Transfer of Sentenced Persons treaty will allow Australians imprisoned in the United Arab Emirates and United Arab Emirates citizens imprisoned in Australia to apply to serve the remainder of their sentences in their home country.

This treaty creates a number of benefits for Australia, including increased rehabilitation prospects for Australian prisoners, as well as contributing to community safety by ensuring effective monitoring and recording of parolees in Australia.

The treaty ensures that the humanitarian, rehabilitative and community safety objectives of prisoner transfers are met while enabling a prisoner’s original sentence to be preserved.

Additionally, the treaty will further strengthen our international crime cooperation relationship with the United Arab Emirates. Such treaties play an increasingly important role in the administration of criminal justice.
Australia already has similar bilateral agreements in place with six countries and is a party to the Council of Europe Convention which facilitates the transfer of prisoners between Australia and 64 other countries.

The Australian Government recognises the importance of fostering strong crime cooperation relationships with our international partners, and the signing of the treaty today contributes directly to that objective.

The treaty will enter into force when both countries have formally notified the other that their domestic implementation processes are complete.