As Prepared Remarks for Chargé d’Affaires Steven Koutsis
Guinean Police Academy Graduation
National School for Police and Civil Protection | October 12, 2020 | 10:30AM-12:30PM
I would like to thank His Excellency Mr. Camara for inviting me here today. Congratulations to all of you for completing your police training. You will soon be assigned to various police stations just before the next presidential election.
The United States is committed to supporting credible, transparent and peaceful elections in Guinea. We believe that all parties must participate peacefully in the democratic process. The right to peaceful assembly and freedom of expression and association are at the heart of a functioning democracy.
We call on everyone, especially those responsible for security, to exercise the utmost restraint, to avoid the excessive use of force and to ensure that the demonstrations are effectively peaceful. We will also monitor the actions of those who interfere in the democratic process and will not hesitate to consider consequences for those responsible for the violence related to the elections.
You and your colleagues are key to the democratic process. It is paramount that security officials such as yourselves maintain neutrality throughout the electoral process. The Guinean people and international observers will closely watch the conduct of you and your colleagues. Security officials, like yourselves, must strictly adhere to international best practices and respect the human rights of all people. If security forces show bias, it will be difficult for your fellow citizens and the international community to consider this a credible election. But if you do your job well, you will be recognized for your good conduct.
Once again, congratulations. Your presence here today demonstrates your commitment to public service and the protection of the rights of all citizens.