Luxembourg starts hiring 30% more police officers
Luxembourg launched a recruitment drive to hire 200 new police officers in each of the next five years, amid rising complaints about a lack of safety in the streets, and complaints from police officers of being overburdened.
Interior Minister Henri Kox kicked off the programme - which he had announced last year - at a press conference on Tuesday, saying the new hiring would increase the police force by almost a third.
A first hiring wave to beef up the police started in 2020, leading to an increase to currently 3,000 officers, from almost 2,400 in 2018, Kox said.
The city of Luxembourg has long clashed with Kox, after mayor Lydie Polfer hired a private security firm to patrol the drugs- and prostitution-plagued Gare area, saying she was responding to residents' complaints the police were invisible. The spat reached a zenith when one of the squads' dogs bit a man, leading Kox to say the use of private security forces could be illegal.
During a gloomy meeting organised by Luxembourg's police union on Monday, police officers let off steam, saying their work was disgusting them, and crime at all-time highs, according to broadcaster RTL.
Last year, there was a surge in robberies in Luxembourg City, with more than 500 incidents - a 16% jump - a police report showed in April.
Justice Minister Sam Tanson said last year that she had requested files from the private security firm Polfer had hired, to analyse whether private security agents had been overstepping their authority.