In 2002, the United Nations General Assembly drafted the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, for purpose to establish a system of regular visits to places where persons deprived of their liberty by independent international and national bodies, in order to prevention torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment and punishment.
Currently, 89 countries around the world have ratified or acceded to the Optional Protocol, and 14 countries have signed the Optional Protocol. Out of the 89 member states of the Optional Protocol, 71 of them established NPM at the national level and showed the will to prevent unacceptable human rights violations in places where persons are deprived of their liberty through preventive visits and cooperation with competent authorities.
Serbia signed the Optional Protocol in September 2003, ratified it in December 2005, while the Member State of the Optional Protocol became in September 2006. At the session of the National Assembly Republic of Serbia, in July 2011 the Ombudsman was appointed to perform the activities of the National Prevention Mechanism (NPM) in cooperation with ombudsmen of autonomous provinces and civil society organizations.
Since 2012, when its started his work, NPM has made about 560 visits to places where or may be found detained persons and sent over 2000 recommendations for remedying the identified deficiencies. Out of this number recommendations, thanks to the cooperation between the NPM and the competent authorities, most of the recommendations have been received, which indicating that among the authorities there is awareness of the need to implement the adopted international standards, respect for human rights and the prevention of abuse.