The Interior Ministry challenged police officers to find a balance between maintaining security and respecting human rights in a competition it organized, a statement on its Facebook page said Tuesday.
Police officers in the different ministry sectors and different ranks were required to submit research papers on how to achieve this balance, the statement said.
“This comes as part of the Interior Ministry’s effort to spread and support the principles and values of human rights in the different sectors,” the ministry said, “and guaranteeing citizens’ rights and freedoms.”
The research would tackle methods of balancing between society’s welfare and that of defendants “within the scope of police work,” the statement said.
It would also look into the best ways for police maintain security and general order during protests and expression of opinion, as well as “respecting human rights regulations when performing their social duties,” it added.
The research would also explore mechanisms to “activate security performance within the framework of human rights,” and respect human rights during investigations, implementing punishment and “different security situations.”
The Interior Ministry has repeatedly defended its human rights record, as it is usually condemned for what international and local rights groups deem “ongoing and systematic oppressive practices.”
The ministry has especially come under fire lately for the growing number of forced disappearances cases and arbitrary detentions, torture at police stations and poor conditions in places of detention.
In the face of mounting criticism, the ministry sought to improve its image lately with several gestures such as sending medical convoys to prisons and police stations, finally allowing families to visit their kin in Al-Aqrab Prison and issuing statements denying the torture of a minor that caused public outrage.