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Commissioner calls on Spain to investigate allegations of disproportionate use of police force in Catalonia

Letter
Strasbourg 09/10/2017
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Commissioner calls on Spain to investigate allegations of disproportionate use of police force in Catalonia

Today the Commissioner published a letter sent on 4 October to Mr Juan Ignacio Zoido Álvarez, Minister of the Interior of Spain, in which he raises concerns regarding allegations of disproportionate use of force by law enforcement authorities in Catalonia on 1 October 2017.

“The Spanish authorities should ensure that swift, independent and effective investigations are carried out into all allegations of police misconduct and disproportionate use of force. This is of fundamental importance, both for deterring any further police misconduct but also to prevent any escalation of tensions and violence. In addition, ensuring accountability for any misconduct is essential to preserve public confidence in the work of law enforcement officials”, writes Commissioner Muižnieks.

In this context, the Commissioner reiterates his recommendation to establish an independent complaints mechanism covering all law enforcement officials, either by enlarging the competencies of the national Ombudsman or by setting up a new body.