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Friday, December 27, 2013

Who are the RRUs of Somaliland and why terrorize the public ?

(Medeshi) - RRU stands for Rapid Response Unit - This is a police unit trained for emergency responses, including terrorism acts, riot controlling and protecting Somaliland citizens as well as foreign workers and diplomats in the country.
The UN has funded the training of the RRU police of Somaliland , although some say that the RRU is a British trained police force.
The RRU is accused of terrorizing civilian’s homes In Hargeisa, and in most major cities and towns of Somaliland although it was created to protect the public.
RRU police in parade in Hargeisa , the capital of Somaliland

RRU force  practices pure police brutality in Somaliland . (Police brutality is the wanton use of excessive force, usually physical, but potentially in the form of verbal attacks and psychological intimidation, by a police officer- WK ). Widespread police brutality therefore, exists in Somaliland . The  killing of an innocent civilian street-vendor in Burao in Dec 22 by the RRU police was unprovoked . The RRU who was immediately deployed in some parts of Burao used live ammunition and indiscriminately fired upon the civilians who were mainly disoriented youths that  burned tyres and blocked roads. The ill informed rioting youths were demonstrating against the transfer of the regional police commissioner.
Young street-vendor shot dead in Burao by the RRU
 in Dec 22, 2013
In December 2012, the RRU police killed 3 teenagers  and injured dozens by firing live ammunition at civilians in October district of Hargeisa after youths supporting Haqsoor political party staged demonstrations demanding the recount of electoral votes.
The RRU has also  has been deployed to suppress the press on several occasions . Few weeks ago, Hubaal newspaper offices were raided and shut down by the RRU police unit for publishing an article which has reportedly revealed divisions  within the Somaliland police force.
Somaliland politicians use the RRU police for political reasons. It is apparent that the RRU is terrorizing the public and acts heavy handily in all its operations while Somaliland politicians are complacent with the RRU harassment against poor Somalilanders. But acts like are known to have negative outcomes and often cause public uprising and civil unrest.
Somaliland government needs to tame the RRU. Politicians need to stop using the RRU to create unnecessary conflicts for political reasons. Elected leaders should prevent the country from falling into anarchy and slipping back to military rule that Somaliland people  had fought against decades ago.

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