Within the framework of the £13 million Memorandum of Understanding signed in June 2016 between the British embassy in Beirut and the Ministry of Interior, a twinning ceremony was held at the Internal Security Forces’ headquarters between the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) and the Lebanese Internal Security Forces (ISF). The strategic twinning between the two police forces aims at strengthening areas of public order, human rights, and coordination and tasking, scenario based training and strategic planning.
British Ambassador to Lebanon Hugo Shorter was accompanied by Deputy Chief Constable Drew Harris of the Police Service of Northern Ireland where they were welcomed by the Director General of the ISF Major General Ibrahim Basbous and the Head of Aramoun Academy General Ahmad Hajjar. They were joined at the ceremony by the Minister of Interior Nouhad Machnouk, Head of Mobile Forces General Fadi Hachem, Head of Police of Beirut General Mohamad Ayoubi, Inspector General Joseph Kallas, and Chief of Staff General Naim Chammas.
The PSNI is a force recognised internationally for excellent work in the fields of community policing, counter terrorism and public order policing. The visit by DCC Harris will build on the relationships between PSNI and senior officers in the ISF and allow DCC Harris to tour a number of ISF facilities.
After the twinning Ambassador Shorter said:
Today marks yet another major step in our strong strategic relationship with the Internal Security Forces. The Police Service of Northern Ireland have bravely undergone deep reform to become a world leading police force that regularly provides advice to partners around the world on subjects such as public order, community policing and human rights. I am very proud that we are able to introduce a strong friend and mentor to the ISF as it embarks on its own journey of reform, in turn the PSNI will benefit from the lessons learnt by the ISF in policing in such a complex social and security environment.
- The PSNI are the police service for Northern Ireland. The PSNI was formed the 4th of November 2001 after decades of sectarian troubles between Republican Catholics seeking independence and Protestant Loyalists seeking to remain part of the United Kingdom. The predecessor to the PSNI was the Royal Ulster Constabulary, a predominantly Protestant organisation. As part of the peace building process it was agreed that a new police force, representing both Catholics and Protestants in equal numbers was required