Nils Muižnieks: Greece must take action against “long-standing and systemic problem of excessive use of violence in law enforcement”

Today the Commissioner for Human Rights published correspondence with the Greek government in which he raises his concern about new reports of ill-treatment by police officers.

Nils Muižnieks stresses that these “well-documented and very serious cases” illustrate a “long-standing and systemic problem of excessive use of violence in law enforcement, which requires determined and systematic action by Greece.”

The commissioner wants Greece’s authorities to adopt preventive measures, such as systematic, initial and ongoing, training of all law enforcement officials, prosecutors and judges.

In addition, the Greek government should ensure that the definition of torture contained in the criminal code is fully aligned with that contained in the European convention against torture.

He also calls on the authorities to review existing legislation in order to ensure that adequate and dissuasive penalties are always imposed by courts and fully executed in all cases of ill-treatment by law enforcement agents.

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