Qatari cops to get community policing lesson

Qatari police officer
Qatari police officer

Qatari police shadowing Wigan division counterparts will be schooled on establishing community links, Greater Manchester Police’s lead officer has said.

The force has agreed a lucrative training deal which will start later this year as the Gulf state gears up for hosting the 2022 World Cup.

Around 100 Qatari officers will visit Greater Manchester for a six-week stint to hone their language and community policing skills, generating a six-figure sum for GMP.

Lead officer chief constable Ian Hopkins said partnership working and learning how to interact with the community is top of the training agenda.

He told the Evening Post: “In many parts of the world we are seen as being at the forefront of policing of protests and major events because we get a lot of practice at it, and that’s good, and long may that continue.

“Although there is an element of (the Qatari cohort) preparing for the World Cup, it’s more about understanding our models or working.

“(The training programme) will centre on our neighbourhood policing structures and we do work with officers from Chile on this as well as Qatar.”

As part of the agreement, GMP has been paid £200,000 for setting up the training programme and will receive a further £887 per student per week.

The agreement between the two forces includes a termination clause “in the event of potential damage to reputation or public confidence” as a result of the training programme.

The shadowing programme used by the students will also allow them to look at policing techniques and how to deal with “newly invented crimes” (crime types that are new to Qatar), according to the contract.

Assistant Chief Constable Zoe Sheard said: “The Qatari police service has expressed a commitment to move its style of policing away from its current military-style model to one that is more community-focused and embraces the principles of the British policing model. “They intend to make significant progress in this regard in advance of hosting the World Cup in 2022.

“Given the experience we have in neighbourhood policing, criminal investigation and policing significant events and sporting fixtures, Qatar have identified GMP as a source of good practice.”