Since 2012 the Ombudsman of the Republic of Bulgaria has acquired a new role, expanding its
multi activities in advocacy of the rights and freedoms of citizens - to act as a National Preventive
Mechanism (NPM) under the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against torture and other
cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. This new function has been implemented
by the recent amendments to the Law on Ombudsman (LO) published in the “State Gazette”, issue
29 of 10th April 2012.
In connection with such new mandate, as from the beginning of June 2012 within the structure of
the Ombudsman was inaugurated a new Directorate - “National Preventive Mechanism and
fundamental human rights and freedoms”, which activity is focused on the facilities where persons
are deprived of liberty or where persons are detained or accommodated due to the act of the
public authority or with the consent of the above authority and which facilities can not be left by
free will.
Performance of the role of a NPM by the Ombudsman as an independent state authority marks a
trend that fits in the development of the institution in the pan-European point of view. Respect for
human rights where they are limited is a mission which to be defended and implemented
consistently by the National Preventive Mechanism with a view to promoting high standards of
human rights and the work of responsible government institutions.
This is the first annual report of the National Preventive Mechanism. The present report covers the
period June - December 2012. During the months covered by this document, the Ombudsman has
set solid foundations for construction of the NPM – he formed an effective administrative team
and start working in full capacity.
The report has not only reporting character. It puts to the attention of the public the legislative and
executive issues and trends, which require regulatory and management decisions.
Konstantin Penchev

2 Annual Report of the National Preventive Mechanism |

Select target paragraph3