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Mozambique: Police

Volume 486: debated on Thursday 22 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development whether he has made representations to the government of Mozambique in support of police reform in that country; and if he will make a statement. (249005)

The UK Government are concerned about human rights violations and lack of police accountability of the kind described in the Amnesty International report on Mozambique—‘Licence to Kill’. In July 2008 the Secretary of State wrote to the government of Mozambique, highlighting some of the key measures required in order to make demonstrable progress in tackling corruption—including in the policing and justice sectors—and to strengthen the legislative framework to eliminate any idea of impunity under the law in Mozambique. The British high commissioner has also raised the issue of police accountability and reform with relevant Ministries on a number of occasions in 2008.

In the process of drawing up its Country Assistance Plan in 2007, the Department for International Development (DFID) decided not to enter the justice sector in Mozambique as a number of major donors—including the World Bank, UNDP, the European Commission, USAID, the Netherlands and Denmark—were already actively engaged. However, well established donor co-ordination mechanisms in Mozambique allow for regular technical dialogue between donors and with government, throughout the year, on the justice and other sectors. UK concerns about policing issues are also specifically raised with the Mozambique government through the EU and high commission.