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Fierce criminals will be in the place where I am currently located. The fence will keep them away from their freedom, barb wire and around 250 employees in this facility. The escape from this prison in Pancevo will be impossible and we were the first ones who managed to take a peek into this complex whose building reminds of Pentagon.
No matter the fact that the Correction facility currently has prisoners at the moment, we are welcomed by the members of the security at the entrance. They are taking us to the entrance without a word.
Silence. Shivers. The silence that freezes your bones.
A heavy gate is opening which is dividing the prison from the outside world. I notice the indescribable peace, silence, as if the time has stopped. Hidden behind the tall walls, this prison is successfully hiding the stories that are not visible to the eye of people passing by.
I have a feeling that I am walking through some park because of the decorated grass and the pathway. However, I notice a few more guards after a few steps, large window bards of the main building. Far from the ideal ordinary park.
I understand that just one step separates me from the world of isolation for the people who will be behind these prison walls for the crimes they committed.
Fierce criminals, rapists, will be here, in this place, in these conditions.
LIKE A MOVIE?
While we were arriving at Pancevo, I imagined the prison like the ones in American series and movies. I believed that there will be a sink in the cells, one bed, and a squat toilet. However, the reality slapped me in the face.
I saw the newest furniture, which can be still smelled in the air, and a private bathroom with all appliances.
I have visited the room designed for people with special needs.
They told me that the cells are furnished with the items made in the Correction facilities in Nis, Pozarevac, Sremska Mitrovica and Kruisevac - beds, mattresses, sheets, tables, chairs, and draws for clothes.
The eyes of armed guards were on me during my entry into the world of thieves, thugs, and murderers, which warn us about the environment where we happened to be, without a single word uttered.
They point us to the yard with vast terrains for walking and sport, which are fenced with barb wire. Wooden benches and a hoop were placed inside.
I believe that everybody will share the same fate and the same dream within these wire fences - to serve their sentence and to return to freedom.
Besides the sports block, there is a block with shops to hire convicts.
LEVEL OF SECURITY
I found out during the tour that this Correction-Facility in Pancevo will be the most modern in the region.
- It will have the highest level of security and it will be equipped with the special technical protection system. It will be able to house 500 people deprived of their freedom. All 10 buildings were completed, the carpentry has been completed, and the interior works are being finished. The prison was constructed in accordance with the modern European prison standards and it will be able to stand side by side with the most modern prisons of European Union - Aleksandar Drobnjak said, the project manager of "Modernization of prison facilities".
I see that the whole complex is surrounded by a double row of fences.
- This fence will be monitored by the latest generation thermal imaging cameras. The entire complex will be covered with hundreds of video surveillance cameras - Aleksandar Drobnjak adds.
The most modern systems of technical security were installed in the Correction facility in Pancevo.
- The central surveillance and management system were successfully installed. The complete surveillance is enabled with this system and software management over those electric and machine installations, hydraulic and circuit backups, panic and orientational lights which determines the use of some of the resources and thus we significantly reduce the expenses, like electric energy, water, gas, and other resources - Dejan Bakic said, the warden of the Correction Facility in Pancevo.
As they say, around 250 people will be employed in prison, there will also be a small educational center for training of the staff, which will be used by employees from other facilities in Vojvodina, Belgrade, and the employees in the Administration for the enforcement of criminal sanctions.
The value of construction and equipping is 23 million euros. The Development bank of Europe's Council gives 18 million euros of credit, and the Republic of Serbia finances 5 million euros and they are going for furnishing of the object.
The institute will also have a special medical unit with several hospital rooms for easier cases, and this block will have its own ultrasound as well as a dental office.
TODAY IS THE SAME AS YESTERDAY AND THE SAME WILL BE TOMORROW
Gavrilo Princip, waiting for the trial for the assassination of Austro-Hungarian Crown prince Franz Ferdinand, wrote on the walls of his dungeon: "The time slowly passes, and nothing new comes. Today is the same as yesterday, and the same will be tomorrow".
His verses describe the best the life of those who are behind bars, no matter how long are they there, or why were they sentenced for.
And while the gate closes behind us, I can't help but think about those verses and the life of those who will spend their time behind these bars.
(Telegraf.co.uk / Kristina Bezbradica - firstname.lastname@example.org)