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Togo: security forces learn about humanitarian principles

21-10-2009 News Release 09/213

Abidjan/Lomé (ICRC) – Seventy-five officers and non-commissioned officers of Togo's security forces have taken part since 20 October in a workshop with the aim of better assimilating international human rights law and humanitarian principles in law-enforcement operations.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC) and Togo's High Commission on Human Rights were involved in the organization of the five-day workshop at the request of Togo's security ministry in order to provide further training for the officers and non-commissioned officers, who will be in charge of the operational guidance of the special forces that will be responsible for security in connection with the 2010 presidential election in Togo.

" Well before the legislative elections of October 2007, the ICRC provided training for members of the security forces so that they would assimilate in their behaviour the humanitarian principles required to accomplish their mission, " explained Emmanuel Placa, representing the ICRC in Togo. " We hope this new workshop will help to refresh their knowledge in anticipation of the upcoming elections. "

The ICRC's Lomé office and the Togolese Red Cross regularly hold sessions to raise awareness among the security and defence forces of the benefits of neutral and independent humanitarian activities, and of respect by law-enforcement personnel for the red cross emblem and for humanitarian principles.

For further information, please contact:
  Abdou Latif Mbacké, ICRC Abidjan, tel: +225 22 40 00 70 or +225 09 39 94 04
  Emmanuel Placa, ICRC Lomé, tel: +228 221 50 74 or +228 911 48 59