South Sudan

UN Police Curb Crime In Refugees Camps

ask geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>“When we isolate them, website we speak to them…we give them lessons, ” Commissioner Yiga told UN Radio Miraya.

“And we tell them if you can’t be part of this community, then we are sorry you may have to leave (the camp). They take this very seriously.”

He said isolating offenders meant taking them out of communities where they had committed crimes and putting them in a separate area.

“I don’t want to use the word arrest because that would be too severe.”

UNPOL had erected a tent at the UN House camp as a “police station”, for instance, where officers spoke with offenders, took statements, offered advice and allowed them to cool off away from their crimes.

The so-called “UNPOL police point” was managed by UNPOL and the (armed) Formed Police Unit, but all actors, including UNMISS military and humanitarians, converged there to exchange advice on managing camps, said Mr. Yiga.

“We minimize as much as possible these instances (of crime),” he said.

“We know they happen. These are human tendencies.”

He called public education, jointly carried out with the displaced, the “biggest tool” in controlling crime.

But undesirable behaviour was also reduced by the camps’ police and military presence as well as humanitarians, who regulated food lines.

Keeping people safe outside camp gates, where shops, cafes and other activities had sprung up, was another story, Mr. Yiga said.

UNPOL was working with local police to ensure the area was properly patrolled, accurate reports were filed and local security forces responded appropriately.



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