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Committee Against Torture launches campaign: "Law Enforcement Officer, remember your oath"

4 June 2013


Source: HRO.org (info) 
The Committee Against Torture is launching a nationwide campaign "Officer, remember your oath" to coincide with International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, celebrated annually on 26 June. In some regions the local government authorities have not appreciated the human rights campaigners' idea, for some reason are scared of remembering the oath, and have refused to allow it. 

In 1997, on the recommendation of the Economic and Social Council, the UN General Assembly declared 26 June International Day in Support of Victims of Torture. The aim of this day is to eradicate torture and provide for effective implementation of the 1984 Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, which came into force on 26 June 1987. 

According to the organisers of the campaign, information panels with quotes from the texts of the oaths of law enforcement officers from the police, Investigative Committee and the Public Prosecutor's Office were supposed to remind them and all citizens of the sacred duty of law enforcement officers to uphold the Constitution and protect people's freedoms and rights. Unfortunately, as the Committee Against Torture points out, only two regions which have representative offices and branches of the organisation have managed to get approval for locations in which to erect such information boards: Nizhny Novgorod and Orenburg. 

In the Republic of Mari El and the Republic of Bashkortostan the prototypes which had already been paid for were "covered up" at the last minute. If in Yoshkar-Ola this was done under the pretext of having to put up some social advertising on these stands (admittedly by 3 June this had still not been done), in Ufa advertisers for the company "RG Virtuoso" openly stated that putting up such information panels had not been approved by the head of the press service of the city administration Askar Fazlyev. For his part, Fazlyev suggested that the text on the panels be changed from "Law enforcement officer, remember your oath" to "Law enforcement officer, we believe that you remember your oath," but in the end this text too was rejected. 

"With regret we are forced to say that the motto 'It will come to no good' still holds sway with many local government officials, and for this reason they are even afraid of putting up information stands with quotes from solemn oaths that should be the main guiding principle for law enforcement officers in carrying out their duties. We will of course appeal against the unlawful actions by both the local advertising agencies and the local administration," the Committee Against Torture said. 
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