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News Roundup: 29 July - 4 August 2013 By: SSR Resource Centre | SSR Weekly | Aug 5, 2013

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Egypt: Police must be reined in to prevent further bloodshed

Amnesty International has raised evidence of police abuses in Egypt as evidence that the country’s police forces are in need of reform. Amid the ongoing demonstrations that have followed the recent transition of power, AI alleges the police have resorted to excessive force in order to quell the uprising. Many demonstrators have been killed as a result. –Amnesty International

Taiwan: New defense minister to strive for military, human rights reform

Taiwan has anointed a new Defense Minister as a result of an ongoing scandal surrounding the death of an army conscript during training. Hung Chung-chiu died after being subjected to extreme physical exercise – his punishment for bringing a camera phone onto the military base. The incoming defense minister has stated that he will begin a review of military conduct. –Chen Pei-huang and Y.L. Kao, Focus Taiwan

Kenya: Amnesty International warns against amending police reform package

Amnesty International has warned that some proposed reforms to the National Police Service Bill may weaken efforts to regulate police behaviour. The regulations in question were implemented after the 2007/2008 election violence, in order to prevent police human rights abuses from re-occurring. –Lydia Matata, allAfrica

Zimbabwe: Security sector agents take over election process

Last week’s elections in Zimbabwe are being questioned by the opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), and by the international community. Indeed, the MDC has alleged that in many cases the state’s security forces have relegated electoral officials to spectating, rather than ensuring a free and fair election. –Thomas Chiripasi, allAfrica

Pakistan: Towards gender sensitive policing

Human rights reforms in Pakistan’s military has been an important priority recently, with a specific focus on equal access to justice for the poor and disadvantaged, and women and children. The Gender Sensitive Policing initiative includes increasing the representation of women in the police forces. –M Uzair Niazi, Pakistan Observer

Tanzania: Fight against illegal firearms is matter of urgency

Armed banditry and other crimes involving weapons are on the increase in Tanzania. The crime wave is being fuelled by the regional illegal trade in small arms and light weapons. President Jakaya Kikwete has called for criminals to surrender their weapons in advance of a major operation to recover illegal weapons. –Chaby Barasa, Daily News



Security sector reform in Africa must be locally owned and responsive, U.S. experts say

A panel of U.S. experts including former diplomats and researchers has spoken about the need for local ownership of security sector reforms in Africa. The panel took place during a course sponsored by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies, and was hosted for U.S. government representatives as an introduction to African security issues. –Africa Center for Strategic Studies

Central African Republic: The reintegration of child soldiers

The rebellion that overthrew the government of Francois Bozize in March featured a great number of child soldiers. Western-run reintegration centres in the country are now presented with the task of helping these children find their families and reintegrate into society after the conflict.