CPT Respond on Riot Control Equipment Issue

NEWS FROM THE CELTIC LEAGUE

The Committee for the Prevention of Torture has responded to a query from the Celtic League about the use of riot control equipment.

The League wrote to the Council of Europe in June raising concerns about the absence of clear guidance to law enforcement agencies on the issue (see link):

“COUNCIL OF EUROPE URGED TO ACT ON RIOT COPS EQUIPMENT SAFEGUARDS”

https://groups.yahoo.com/group/celtic_league/message/3935

In the reply from CPT Deputy Executive Secretary, Fabrice Kellens, the monitoring body say they have made reference to the issue frequently but only within the context of the CPT mandate (see below):

“I thank you for your letter dated 7 June 2013 raising the issue of the use by law enforcement agencies of chemical sprays and incapacitant gases as riot control equipment.

As you are perfectly aware, the mandate of the CPT covers the places where persons are deprived of their liberty by a public authority (article 2 ECPT) and you rightly pointed out in your letter “the limits of the CPT’s mandate” as regards the use of special weaponry in the context of riot control operations.

I am pleased to inform you that the CPT has already made comments and recommendations as regards the use of sprays and gases in the context of the control of persons deprived of their liberty, in particular in prison establishments.”

The response goes on to reference areas of the CPT website/database where details of CPT comment on the issue can be found. It is in fact quite extensive and also includes reference to use of protection weapons such as the Taser.

It is clear that the CPT have made some positive comment in this area and its unfortunate that at this time that this guidance is not applied more generally to European Police Services.

J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information

08/07/13

For comment or clarification on this news item in the first instance contact:

General Secretary, Celtic League:

gensec@celticleague.net

The General Secretary will determine the appropriate branch or General Council Officer to respond to your query.

ISSUED BY THE CELTIC LEAGUE INFORMATION SERVICE.

The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on socio-economic issues

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https://groups.yahoo.com/group/celtic_league/

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