Northern Triangle Country Militaries Train on Humanitarian Principles and the Use of Force

The armed forces of Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras will train in humanitarian principles and international standards on the use of force.
Honduran Secretariat of National Defense | 24 February 2017

Capacity Building

Members of the armed forces of Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras attend the opening ceremony for the course on humanitarian principles and international standards on the use of force. (Photo: Honduran Secretariat of National Defense)

Universal norms will be integrated into the military’s public security tasks in the region’s three countries.

Training is the result of a memorandum of understanding signed by the Honduran Secretariat of National Defense and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Twenty-five officers from Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala will attend the specialized course from February 7th-24th to strengthen their theoretical and practical knowledge on the application of international standards on the use of force.

The lectures will deal with the role of the armed forces in public security, public security in Central America, the rule of law, and the use of force, and will be led by national and international guest panelists.

“Participating in this type of training gives the personnel added value when they put these techniques and procedures into practice when using force. We aim to correctly apply this knowledge during operations so we can ensure human rights are respected,” said Cavalry Colonel Juan Ramón Barahona Uriarte, head of the Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Secretariat of the Honduran Armed Forces Joint Staff.

“The ICRC as an impartial, neutral and independent humanitarian institution seeks to promote the knowledge and integration of international standards on the use of force, including the use of firearms, arrest and detention, doctrine, teaching, training and equipment, and internal oversight systems of the armed forces and the security forces,” explained Eduardo Ubierna, ICRC head of mission in Honduras.

The instructor training course for the armed forces and security forces is part of the ICRC activities in Central America. In the past three years, these forces have developed processes for teaching and integrating international standards on the use of force.

To date more than 6,000 military members who participate in public security operations in support of the national police have been trained as a result of the instructor training and the collaboration between the Armed Forces Human Rights Directorate and the ICRC.

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