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Thusian members strongly condemn all brutality

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The members of the Thusian Institute for Religious Liberty (TIRL) Inc., a Human Rights and Freedoms education provider with special emphasis on the Right to Religious Liberty, has strongly condemned what it calls “the excessive and brutal force that was meted out to members of the Opposition and some protesters by some police officers on Thursday, March 3, 2011”.{{more}}

“The police have a duty to protect and serve ALL the people without brutality to anyone whatsoever. Members of all political parties must be treated equally – with respect for their God-given Rights and Freedoms. Any violent and intolerant behavior is unacceptable in the eyes of God and by the Constitution of St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” the release from TIRL said.

“We also condemn every open and subtle threat made to the person and property of any protestor. Protest is a natural, God-given freedom. It is a statement or action to express disapproval of an official policy. The protest held last Thursday in and outside the people’s parliament was a reaction to the passage of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) by the ULP Administration and their move to amend a section of the Representation of the People Act (RPA). The CPC now makes it mandatory to seek permission from the Director of Public Prosecution to take a criminal matter to the court. An individual no longer has the choice of lodging a private criminal complaint directly to the court. The amendments to the RPA take away stiff penalties for crimes of slander and libel that are committed by candidates before and during an election period against other candidates.

“We call on all Vincentians, including the guilty police officers, to respect the rights and freedoms of their fellowmen while they exercise their God-ordained freedom to protest.

We also call on governments to realize that they are ordained by God to minister ‘good’ to all the people and not to be ‘a terror to good works, but to the evil’(see Romans 13:1-5). Government must serve the citizens by respecting the rights of all the people regardless of their political affiliation,” the release ended.

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