Constitutional Provisions

The 1971 Constitution of the United Arab Emirates (as amended through 2004) does not guarantee the right to life but it is specified that: "No man shall be subjected to torture or other indignity." 

Under Article 33, the freedom of assembly and the freedom to hold meetings shall be guaranteed within the limits of the law.

The Constitution does not directly regulate the use of force by the police.

Treaty Adherence

Global Treaties

Adherence to Selected Human Rights Treaties
1966 Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) Not party
ICCPR Optional Protocol 1 Not party
1984 Convention against Torture (CAT) State Party
Competence of CAT Committee to receive individual complaints No
CAT Optional Protocol 1 Not party
Adherence to International Criminal Law Treaties

1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court


Regional Treaties

Adherence to Regional Human Rights Treaties
2004 Arab Charter of Human Rights State Party

National Legislation

Police Use of Force

Each emirate maintains a local police force, which is officially a branch of the federal Ministry of Interior. The Dubai Police is claimed to be "the most forward thinking and progressive Arab police force today". 

It is not known if internal regulations governing police use of force and firearms are compliant with international law and standards. 

Police Oversight

There is no independent civilian police oversight body at federal level.

In 2017, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) organized a regional training workshop in Abu Dhabi on the "Conduct of Law Enforcement Officials in Maintaining Order and Responding to Crime in the Middle East and North African (MENA) Countries".



In its national report for its 2018 Universal Periodic Review under the United Nations Human Rights Council, the UAE stated that: "Pursuant to Ministerial Decision No. 654 of 2005, a police code of conduct and ethics was issued for personnel of the Ministry of the Interior. A policy on the use of force in the Ministry of the Interior has also been adopted...."

The UAE has not yet come before the Committee against Torture although it submitted its national report in December 2018.


There is no regional court established under the 2004 Arab Charter of Human Rights.


1971 Constitution of the United Arab Emirates (as amended through 2004)

UAE Report to the Committee against Torture (2018) (Arab original)

UAE National Report for the UPR (2018)