Justice Ministry authorities opened a newly redesigned prison in Kongsvinger last week that will house foreign male prisoners due to be deported after serving their jail terms.
The Vardåsen Prison in Kongsvinger can accommodate 97 men, 49 of whom need to be held in high-security custody. The goal is to use the prison strictly for foreign convicts who won’t be returned to society in Norway, and therefore aren’t subject to the rehabilitation work conducted at most Norwegian prisons. Instead, they’ll be sent back to their countries of origin after completing their prison terms.
The prison in Kongsvinger already has inmates from 20 different nations, and its training programs will concentrate on English, building trades, technology and basic lessons in reading, writing and arithmetic. Conditions at the prison will be no worse than at other Norwegian prisons, which some foreign convicts have referred to as “hotels” compared to prisons in their homelands.