Minister of Interior Magdy Abdel Ghaffar met a group of journalists in his office on Monday to discuss police abuse and plans to confront terrorism.
During the meeting, he announced that five policemen were sent to work in other police stations in various governorates after they were accused of torturing citizen to death in Luxor last week.
He confirmed the ministry’s efforts to penalise policemen for negative behaviour. “We penalise policemen for things citizens are not penalised for,” he said since the Egyptian police represents the country image and carries major responsibility to preserve the state security and respect people’s dignity.
An inspection apparatus would be introduced inside police stations to monitor policemen’s performance and to observe violations. He said this decision will limit police abuse inside police stations, since their role is to secure people and not threaten them.
Regarding efforts to confront terrorism, the ministry recently succeeded in directing decisive attacks against several terrorist groups, which were planning to commit suicide operations in the country. Security forces arrest terror suspects daily and transfer them to investigations.
The ministry’s performance relies on discipline and commitment and that they have an extensive disciplinary system, considered the biggest and the strongest among all the states ministries, he said.
“The Ministry of Interior releases statement to ‘polish’ its image and this will not solve the crisis; we need actions to stand against police brutality,” Director of the Arab Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) Gamal Eid told Daily News Egypt.
There are four initiatives to improve and advance Egyptian police’s performance but the ministry has continuously ignored them as “revenge” for the Egyptian people’s wide-scale action against them on 28 January in the 25 January Revolution in 2011.
“We do not reject the ministry’s efforts to fight terrorism but currently this not the most important issue. We have another problem now that needs a serious stand. The news of several police abuse cases that occurred in recent days aims to spark people’s anger to speak up for their rights and dignity,” Eid said.