Brazil: Training on Use of Force Standards
On 31 March 2021, the Omega Research Foundation provided online training to the Brazilian Mechanism to Prevent and Combat Torture (MNPCT) on international human rights standards on the use of force, including less lethal weapons. All eight members of the MNCPT attended and contributed to valuable discussions.
The Brazilian National Mechanism to Prevent and Combat Torture (NPM) has documented countless cases of torture and other ill-treatment perpetrated using firearms and particularly less lethal weapons, while stating that the presence of large quantities of weapons in places of detention “leads to conditions very conducive to torture”. Its reports help to create an evidence base demonstrating the need to strengthen regulation and oversight of the use of force in places of detention throughout Brazil.
Omega first provided training to the MNCPT in 2016 and our strategic partnership has continued to grow ever since. In 2020, Omega, our partners Justiça Global and the MNPCT collaborated with the Federal Public Defender’s Office, leading to the National Human Rights Council (Conselho Nacional de Direitos Humanos) adopting a recommendation on the regulation of less lethal weapons in the penitentiary system, a first step towards addressing the absence of use of force protocols in the majority of states.
Bárbara Suelen Coloniese, MNPCT Expert and General Coordinator, said “The MNCPT’s partnership with the Omega Research Foundation enriches our analysis of the use of less lethal weapons and contributes technical and legal expertise to identify when their use is undue, inadequate and excessive. In this way, Omega helps the MNPCT to address the violent practices that exist in places of detention all over the country.”