Police officers were at both checkpoints. Once in their element, the second time as elements that are “defending” their rights or just trying to hit the playing field. “The scenario of the exercise is based on situations based on real situations. There are approximately 900 police officers on site, supported by future police officers from our Prague school and two traditional high schools,” said Peter Senotka, Director of the Order Police Service at the Police Presidency of the Czech Republic. .
Vaclav Harappa was also among the volunteers who might someday wear a police uniform. The text attributed to him the role of a protester who tied himself to a colleague with a chain and prevented vehicles from passing on a busy road. “We play the passive resistance of the response teams to learn what to do in this situation. It is interesting to us as well, because we see how these power groups work. And I must say that the police officers are really respectful, especially of the sniffer dogs,” Hraba said.
Image: We want a resignation. 70,000 people came to demonstrate against the government in Prague
Even before the conflict between the police and protesters broke out, members of the anti-conflict team tried to solve all the simulated situations. Its members, who currently number 220 across the country and are this year celebrating their 15th anniversary, refer to each other as “Akati”. And one of the most professional is the coordinator of the Anti-Conflict Team of the Czech Republic Police, Martin Korikanski, who began working in a yellow reflective jacket with an inscription of his purpose in the crowd in 2007.
The most powerful weapon? a word
He evaluated the exercise positively. Especially the part where the two groups of protesters faced each other. “This is the so-called throat effect, when people find themselves in an enclosed space, like the Letna Tunnel, and they behave very differently than usual,” Kuriansky said, adding that it’s a good idea for police officers to try roles on both sides of the mock barrier. “When they know what it is like in the role of a protester, they will work in other ways in the ranks of Akats. For example, how crowd psychology and crowd psychosis work,” Koryčanský said.
Four-legged helpers. Police horses must withstand shooting and fire during training
The veteran member of the anti-conflict team also revealed what goes through his head when he goes to discuss the demonstration with those he agrees with internally. “The worst thing is when the opposition is not football hooligans, or extremists, but angry ordinary citizens, for example your neighbours. You may sympathize with their opinions, but you cannot show them, you have to remain impartial. This is the most difficult. You understand them humanly, but Conflicts must be avoided, and order must be maintained.”
The primary weapon of anti-conflict team members is their voice. “An ACP member’s job is to prevent escalation of violence on site in a transparent manner through communication. Transparency means being visible in a yellow and blue reflective jacket to let everyone know where we belong. And our greatest weapon is the word.” He also admitted that the mood in society now is that Acacia has more and more work to do.
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