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Norwegian Police Shares Expertise With Royal Thai Police

On 22 March, The Norwegian Centre for Human Rights (NCHR) and The Norwegian Police Academy (PHS) conducted the seminar “From Interrogation to Investigative Interviewing” in Bangkok. The guests were high-level representatives from the Royal Thai Police, Thailand Institute of Justice (TIJ), United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Department of Special Investigation (DSI), academics, and representatives from civil society. The purpose of the seminar was to facilitate bilateral cooperation in training of Royal Thai Police in Investigative Interviewing.

H.E. Ambassador Kjetil Paulsen opened the seminar by expressing his sincere gratitude to all who had been involved in making the seminar possible. He emphasized the importance of improving criminal investigations, and to strengthen the position of human rights in the process.  

The instructors of the seminar were Mr. Ivar Husby, Assistant Chief of Police of the Norwegian Police Service, Mr. Gisle Kvanvig, Director of ASEAN/Vietnam for NHCR, and Dr. Ivar Fahsing, Police Superintendent of PHS. Previously they have conducted similar seminars in Vietnam, Indonesia, and China. Together they explained how Investigative interviewing differs from interrogation. 

Investigative interviewing is a way of gaining information from suspects, witnesses and victims by ensuring that the person can talk as freely and undisturbed as possible. With interrogation, the investigator is rather trying to get confessions or confirm presumptive ideas. Based on a continuously growing body of research, the toolbox of investigative interviewing methodology appears to be superior to the traditional interrogation techniques. It increases both the quantity and quality of the information, and thus make police work easier. It leads to higher amount of solved criminal cases, reduced number wrong convictions, and more humane treatment of suspects.

In addition to educating the guests at the seminar, an objective was to establish a Norwegian cooperation with the Royal Thai Police that can promote education on Investigative Interviewing of Royal Thai Police personnel.

Pol. Gen. Rungroj Saengkram , Commissioner general of Royal Thai Police, made it clear that it indeed was an interest for this from the Royal Thai Police.

-The aspect of Human Rights is of crucial to us. Therefore, it is important that representatives from Royal Thai Police can be thought about this methodology in a way so that they can teach other members of Royal Thai Police.

Prof. Dr.Kittipong Kittayarak, TIJ Executive Director, agreed with Pol. Gen. Rungroj Saengkram, and highlighted how TIJ appreciateded being a part of the seminar.

 -It is such a great pleasure for TIJ to be a part of the effort that made this event possible. (…) I think that the discussion on the criminal investigation program today is both appropriate and timely.