From: Ilmi Rehova
PM Rama’s Exploitation of Female Police Officers

Prime Minister Edi Rama has been using the same scenario for a long time: exploiting female police officers to discredit and shame protests and clashes between citizens and his government. In every single protest since his first day in power, PM Rama has always been lining up the female police officers in the front lines of the police force with every opposition protest.

These female officers are part of the regular police force, mostly from the traffic police. However, in an irresponsible way and presumably in violation of police regulations, they are used as front line police officers in confrontations and control of civil protests.

Being not trained, disorganized, and uninstructed to confront masses and riots, also unskilled in neutralizing individuals inciting violence, they are actually being used by PM Edi Rama as cannon fodder for propaganda– with the purpose of contrasting them with protesters, and presenting in the most negative way possible all protests and clashes of citizens with the police.

While the use of violent means by protesters today is condemnable and unjustified, the use of young, inexperienced, unskilled female officers, with no proper means to confront masses, must be investigated, and high-ranking police officials who deployed and assigned them duties must take responsibility.

The use of female cops, and more generally the use of untrained police officers with no minimal equipment to confront masses and public riots, is punishable by internal police regulations as well as by laws on workplace safety.

Apart from the pain and compassion for her, the images of the female cop injured after holding a fuse igniter thrown by protesters, and her colleagues’ amateurish reaction were testimonials to a completely unskilled and unequipped police force jeopardized by routine protesters’ acts.

This cynical practice of police leaders, carried out for propaganda purposes and endangering police officers’ and protesting citizens’ lives, must immediately come to an end.

More importantly, PM Rama must stop exploiting unprotected policewomen for political purposes.

PM Rama is as much responsible in front of the parents of the policewoman, who lost her fingers, as protesters throwing the fuse igniter are. He is actually even more responsible than protesters: while they presumably didn’t intentionally target the now injured policewoman, PM Rama’s use of her was premeditated – intentionally lining her up in the front line against protesters, hoping she would get injured in clashes, and he would use that fact to discredit the protest and protesters.

That’s exactly what happened. Unfortunately.

Therefore, PM Rama and police leaders implementing his devious plans should not be condoned for their jeopardizing of police officers’ lives for political purposes.