18 Jul 2005

Fiji police dismiss claims officers need more human rights training

9:41 am on 18 July 2005

For Monday"

Fiji's top police officer has dismissed claims armed officers should be given more training in human rights.

A United Nations meeting on gun control has heard from a Suva-based NGO which said Fiji police officers needed to learn more about the human rights system and the use of force.

But Fiji's Police Commissioner, Andrew Hughes, says human rights education is present throughout officer training.

"For those small groups that have access to arms, I've sent officers over to Australia, to train with the specialist response and security team in the Australian Federal Police. We've just sent the director of the tactical response team to New Zealand, where he's worked on the command course with the Armed Offenders Squad, and we're looking at linkages there with the training.

Commissioner Hughes says he has no intention of routinely arming police in Fiji.