Royal Dutch/Shell Use of Force Guidelines


  We have developed Group security guidelines on the use of force, including physical restraint and using firearms, which conform to the United Nations `Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials' and `Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials'.

Any use of force must respect human dignity and the human rights of all people. It must be strictly within the law. Only minimum force proportional to the threat should be used, and damage and injury must be minimised. Security personnel must be given clear and unambiguous instructions and training on when and how force may be used, and report any use of force as soon as possible. They must render medical aid to injured persons, including offenders. They must be told that they will be accountable for any excessive use of force.

The guidelines were updated in 1999 to include further improvements to the safety requirements for carrying and using fire arms.

As well as giving guidance on the use of force they lay out Shell's minimum criteria applying to armed guards and the safe handling and maintenance of fire arms. If armed guards are used, minimum standards that should be applied include: government authority to carry weapons; a definition of weapon type and ammunition, allowing for differentiated use of force and firearms; handling, safety and maintenance rules and procedures; rules of engagement; selection and training standards and certificates of competence, and incident reporting and investigation procedures.

The Group security guidelines also specify rules of engagement emphasising that in all situations guards must respect human dignity and the human rights of all people and that in every case only the minimum force proportional to the threat should be used.

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