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Adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly
resolution 45/111 of 14 December 1990
1. All prisoners shall be treated with the respect due to
their inherent dignity and value as human beings.
2. There shall be no discrimination on the grounds of race,
colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion,
national or social origin, property, birth or other status.
3. It is, however, desirable to respect the religious
beliefs and cultural precepts of the group to which prisoners
belong, whenever local conditions so require.
4. The responsibility of prisons for the custody of
prisoners and for the protection of society against crime shall be
discharged in keeping with a State's other social objectives and its
fundamental responsibilities for promoting the well-being and
development of all members of society.
5. Except for those limitations that are demonstrably
necessitated by the fact of incarceration, all prisoners shall
retain the human rights and fundamental freedoms set out in the
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and, where the State
concerned is a party, the International Covenant on Economic, Social
and Cultural Rights, and the International Covenant on Civil and
Political Rights and the Optional Protocol thereto, as well as such
other rights as are set out in other United Nations covenants.
6. All prisoners shall have the right to take part in
cultural activities and education aimed at the full development of
the human personality.
7. Efforts addressed to the abolition of solitary
confinement as a punishment, or to the restriction of its use,
should be undertaken and encouraged.
8. Conditions shall be created enabling prisoners to
undertake meaningful remunerated employment which will facilitate
their reintegration into the country's labour market and permit them
to contribute to their own financial support and to that of their
9. Prisoners shall have access to the health services
available in the country without discrimination on the grounds of
their legal situation.
10. With the participation and help of the community and
social institutions, and with due regard to the interests of
victims, favourable conditions shall be created for the
reintegration of the ex-prisoner into society under the best
11. The above Principles shall be applied impartially.