A security expert and human rights lawyer working for the United Nations David Falt has called for a special international law to deal with issues of separatism, extremism and terrorism
Speaking at a one day siminar organised by international human rights group, Global Amnesty Watch, Falt, a British said that there are no laws in dealing with separatism, extremism and terrorism in international law because those laws didn’t envisage the current situation.
He said International conventions are meant to address conflicts between nations and not between state actors and dissident elements within the society.
In an address, the Chief Of Army Staff (COAS), Lt Gen TY Buratai, represented by the Director of Army Public Relations, Brig Gen. SK Usman said the Nigerian Army as a show of commitment to respect of human rights in its operations has set up a human rights desk to investigate allegations of human rights abuses by its personnel.
He said the Nigerian Army made history by opening its doors and some it’s facilities to amnesty international and other stakeholders in human rights issue to
He also said the Nigerian Army under the leadership of Gen Buratai has carried out field marshal of officers accused of human rights abuses.
He said the army has always carried out investigation of complaints by civilian population against its officers and has not shielded those found culpable.
In his address, the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris represented by the FCT commissioner of Police, Musa Kimo said protection of human rights is a core function of the Nigerian Police but said some human rights observer reports seem to be politically motivated locally and internationally
He however identified reasons responsible for misleading reports by human rights observers to include the following.
He said, “some human rights observer reports seem to be politically motivated locally and internationally
“Some of the insurgents may have influenced or infiltrated the human rights observers, hence some of their reports appears supportive of the insurgents cause.
“Lack of strong synergy between security forces and the human rights observers.
“The human rights observers mostly depend on the media reports without bothering to cross check and ascertain the authenticity or otherwise of what the media reported.
“Mutual suspicion between the security forces and the human rights observers.
Speaking on way forward, he said there is need to bridge he gap between the human rights observers and security forces.
He lamented that media propaganda and misleading reports as a style adopted currently by human right observers cannot belo but pass the wrong message to the public.
He said these in turn have negatively impacted on efforts made by the Nigerian Police to ensure a friendly policing environment.
Speaking further, he said, “Let me categorically state that when such complaints are eceived, high powered investigation is usually launched to ascertain the true position of the complaints and in not cases the outcome of the investigation report usually become a subject of debate by human rights observers.
“Protection of human rights is a core function of the Nigerian Police, to ensure strict adherence I professional policing, the Nigerian Police have constantly formulated policies and disciplinary measures that would galvanize its relationship with the public, as we can all testify that the outcome of the police community relations committee.”
In her address, the country rep for Global Amnesty Watch (GAW) Mrs Helen Adesola lamented the template being used by human rights observer group, describing them as obselete
She said organisation and persons working in conflict areas, particularly those engaged in monitoring compliance with human rights convention must think baton dated templates
She said, “we must collectively call time in the practice of some vested international interests using foreign NGOs as propaganda tools to support terrorists that have been documented in some instances as having international backing”.
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