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Friday, January 25, 2008

Police in Ireland now using tasers

January 25, 2008
BBC News

Specialist units in the PSNI will be armed with Taser guns from this weekend. The so-called 'stun guns', which hit their target with 50,000 volts, are already used by police in other parts of the UK and the Republic.

Monica McWilliams of the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission said she still had grave concerns. "Tasers should not been deployed until the equality and human rights impacts have been fully assessed." she said. "We are surprised that the police are deploying this weapon after only a two-day training programme. There remain genuine concerns about the safety of this particular technology. As such, concerns have yet to be addressed around the potential for violating articles 2 and 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights concerning the right to life and inhumane treatment."

A spokeswoman for the Policing Board said its human rights advisor had observed the PSNI's Taser training. "The advisor is currently seeking clarification on aspects of the training to allow a final opinion to be provided," she said.

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