Equality commission seriously concerned over police crimes against foreigners

Equality commission says persons in the public sphere have responsibility to refrain from spreading hostility towards groups based on their nationality or skin colour

A past protest against racism
A past protest against racism

The equality commission has expressed “serious concern” after three police officers were charged with abducting and assaulting foreign nationals.

The National Commission for the Promotion of Equality (NCPE) said the alleged victims appear to have been chosen on the basis of their skin colour and nationality.

It said all cases of racism, discrimination and intolerance are an affront to a democratic society and should be treated with the utmost seriousness.

The NCPE commended the police force for taking immediate action after receiving reports of this abuse and acknowledged the reforms undertaken to prevent and address such gross misconduct.

“These incidents are not only deplorable in themselves but they also mar the reputation of the police force in its entirety,” the NCPE said, as it called on all public institutions to audit their structures in order to identify systemic racism and take the necessary action to ensure that all social groups in Malta are considered and treated equally as valuable members of society.

The commission said cases of violent racism, wherever they happen, are never isolated incidents but always connected to a context of social inequality and normalised behaviour of hatred.

“Persons in the public sphere have a responsibility to promote values of equality and social inclusion, and to refrain from spreading hostility towards groups based on their nationality or skin colour,” the NCPE said.

Three young police officers have been charged with abducting foreign nationals, taking them to a secluded field and beating them.

Rica Mifsud Grech, 22, Jurgen Falzon, 24, and Luca Brincat, 20, were charged with abduction, causing grievous bodily harm and carrying out crimes against human dignity.

All three have pleaded not guilty.

The crimes were reported by fellow police officers with the force taking immediate action to investigate and prosecute the three officers.

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