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The Burmese Police Force have recruited some 40,000 civilians as ‘special police’, to assist with security during the 8 November general election.
The new recruits come from different ethnic groups and regional areas, and will undergo police training from 20 – 31 October in their respective states and regions, according to local reports.
Criticism has been leveled at the decision, as authorities equipped civilians with ‘Duty’ armbands to act as police during crackdowns at protests in Rangoon earlier in the year.
The police force has sought to assuage concerns, stating that the new recruits are ordinary civilians, and will be free from party politics. The temporary recruits reportedly will not wear the ‘Duty’ armbands, but will instead be identified with a patch on the arm embroidered with ‘special police’, in black stitching.
The fresh recruits will receive a 120,000 kyat (US $93) salary, plus an additional 30,000 kyat allowance, however details have not been released on whether staff will receive the payment in a lump sum or in increments.
The special police will be required to keep a booklet of their twelve duties and responsibilities on their person at all times throughout their work.