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Uganda: ICRC holds first course on international humanitarian principles for police

06-06-2006 News Release

The ICRC and the Uganda Police Force (UPF) today closed an 8-day joint training exercise during which 26 police instructors were trained in International Humanitarian Principles and Human Rights (IHP/HR) applicable in policing.

 The following was issued as a press release by the ICRC delegation in Kampala on June 6 2006  


The programme included lectures by the ICRC police expert Erling Melkjorsen on law enforcement powers, the use of force and firearms, the prevention of crime, the maintenance of public order and the role of the police.

The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Major General Kale Kaihura, said in a speech read by his deputy, Mr Julius Odwe, at the opening of the course that " this training is going to go a long way in professionalizing the police and in exposing our officers to international policing standards " . He added that the " rights of people, especially women and children that have been violated during conflict, need to be jealously protected, because the victims are still vulnerable " .

The UPF will now begin incorporating IHP/HR into its training in line with international treaties like the African Charter on Human and People's Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. These officers will form the foundation of personnel equipped to teach IHP/HR in police institutions. The conduct of nine such courses is envisaged during a three year period of co-operation between the ICRC and the UPF.

" This is the first step towards the strengthening of the cooperation between the Uganda Police Force and the ICRC aiming at developing more competencies within the Police Force. We believe that this joint effort aimed at promoting a change in conduct, attitude and behaviour will only lead to the benefit of all " , said the ICRC Head of Delegation, Michel Meyer.

Enhancing basic knowledge of humanitarian principles contained in international legislation forms part of the ICRC's activities carried out in a neutral, impartial and independent manner.

The ICRC also carries out assistance activities in the areas of medical and health, water and sanitation and distribution of household items in 65 internally displaced people's camps in the conflict affected districts in northern Uganda, covering the main immediate needs of around 700,000 internally displaced persons.

 For further information, please contact:  

 Graziella Leite Piccolo, ICRC Kampala, tel. 0772 221 994 Or 041 341 605/6  

 Henry Ochieng, ICRC Kampala, tel. 0772 501 436 Or 041 341 605/6