1 Nov 2006

PNG police dismiss abuse claims

8:19 pm on 1 November 2006

Papua New Guinea's Police Commission has dismissed claims the constabulary abuses people in custody with impunity.

This follows a recent report which describes beatings, torture and rape of people in custody including children.

In its second report in two years on police brutality in PNG, Human Rights Watch says police rarely face punishment and are feared by the public as much as criminals in PNG.

The deputy Police Commissioner Tony Wagambie says incidences of police abusing those in custody are minimal.

"We have one odd case but the way ti was reported, I just don't agree with that report. Police officers now, they're well educated people and they know what's right from wrong. And to say that we're torturing and raping young females and boys... I just don't understand where these people are coming from."

Tony Wagambie insists the Force is reforming, saying 75 percent of recommendations from the recent review of the constabulary have been implemented.