EU launches major public order policing training programme in Ukraine

EU launches major public order policing training programme in Ukraine

The FINANCIAL -- The European Union Advisory Mission (EUAM) Ukraine have recently launched an extensive training programme on public order policing for the National Police of Ukraine (NPU) in cooperation with the Danish and Swedish police.

The aim of the training is to help ensure that demonstrations and mass gatherings take place peacefully and minimise the risk of violence.

This large-scale practical training programme is being conducted as part of the EU-funded ‘Support to Police Reform in Ukraine’ project and will last until September 2018, according to the EU Neighbours portal.

In the first three-week training in Kyiv, which took place on 5-21 March, 70 police officers participated. It is planned that up to 400 officers from the NPU will have received training by end of 2018. The most successful participants will become trainers themselves and will pass on the experience they gained from the course to their colleagues.

“We want to help our Ukrainian colleagues believe that they can work in a different way, to assess the situation and risks, to take decisions and take responsibility for their decisions”, said the Head of EUAM, Kęstutis Lančinskas. “The EU approach is based upon de-escalation, mobility and tactical decisions, which help avoid causalities.”

The training programme takes into consideration that the use of force should be the last option in public order actions, when all other means of de-escalation have been attempted.

"The main task of the police is not to control mass events, but to assist, interact and communicate with participants and organisers of mass events”, underlined the Head of the NPU, Serhiy Kniazev.

The programme will train Ukrainian police on how to react more quickly and reduce injuries and casualties. One of the tactical aspects of this is to use vehicles as a natural shield. This is a method which is proven to protect both police officers and demonstrators, and thus reduce the potential for injuries.