Police Brutality 

Police Brutality is the excessive use of force by law enforcement and is used to refer to various human rights violations by police. This might include beatings, racial abuse, unlawful killings, torture, or indiscriminate use of riot control agents at protests.

The use of force by law enforcement has been declared as a human right issue, due to the main reason of resulting in people being deprived of their right to life. As well as, amounting to torture or other ill-treatment. Unlawful force by police can also violate the right to be free from discrimination, the right to liberty and security, and the right to equal protection under the law.

Police Brutality is often caused by a combination of factors including inadequate laws, racial or other forms of discrimination, insecurity or conflict, and entrenched impunity. This way of response is usually authorized as an illegal act. However, under international law, police officers should only ever use lethal force as a last resort, this means when such force is strictly necessary to protect themselves or others from the imminent threat of death. Therefore,  it’s legalized in presence of such events as in riot,  protests or in approaching danger.

International human rights law strictly prohibits all forms of discrimination.Yet, racism and other forms of discrimination are built into law enforcement and justice systems around the world. Months ago, the world has witnessed the devastating murder of two unarmed black people ‘George Floyd’ and ‘Breona Tyler’ by white police officers. These horrific killings sparked widespread protests across the USA and beyond, calling for the officers involved to be held accountable and a change in the system. In a similar point, it was documented in the UK, how many people have been labeled as suspected gang members for reasons as trivial as the music they listen to or the videos they watch online. Likewise, in 2014, Nakiea Jackson was shot dead by police in Kingston, Jamaica, while he was working at his job as a cook. Similarly, the Philippines has also witnessed police shooting innocent people who were suspected of using drugs as they were on the ground begging for mercy. 

It’s claimed that ‘Nobody is above the law.’ Though, police officers who unlawfully kill or injure people often get away with it. In a world devastated by the deaths and injuries of hundreds of people, many of them unarmed, at the hands of police officers. Drastic changes are needed in our approach to public safety.

 

Zaina Hamzeh 

English Modern School Doha

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