7 Mar 2005

Catholic church in PNG condemns reports that police have a shoot to kill policy

8:29 pm on 7 March 2005

The Secretary General of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Papua New Guinea says police public statements are not helping the fight against crime.

In recent weeks, high-ranking police officials have declared through local media, that they will shoot to kill criminals.

However Lawrence Stevens says the comments are not very constructive in the long-term.

Mr Stevens says the law insists that people should have the chance to be tried by a court and not just executed on the spot.

"When you have a police officer making statements about the advisibility of shooting to kill, it doesn't help us in the long run. We need to show encourage these people to show respect for the laws introduced in our parliament."

Mr Stevens says he does understand the frustration that police often feel but he says the law and order situation can be resolved without a shoot-to-kill policy.