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Spain appoints its first ever female police chief

Spain appointed Friday a woman to head the country's oldest police force, the Guardia Civil, for the first time in the agency's 175-year history.

Spain appoints its first ever female police chief
The interior ministry announced on Friday afternoon that Maria Gamez would be the new Director General. Photo: Guardia Civil
The interior ministry said in a statement it had appointed Maria Gamez, formerly the central government representative in the southern province of Malaga, as the “first woman” a the helm of the 80,000-strong Guardia Civil force.
 
Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, in office since June 2018, has made feminism and the promotion of women to positions of power a cornerstone of his policies.
   
“In 1988 women were allowed to join the Guardia Civil, now nearly 6,000 woman are part of this institution. Today, over 30 years later, a woman will be its director general. We can continue to advance towards real equality. Congratulations Maria!,” he tweeted after his cabinet approved Gamez's nomination.
   
Sanchez, who was sworn in for a second term earlier this Monday, appointed a 22-member cabinet which has an equal number of men and women.
   
Three of his four deputies are women and females occupy key posts such as industry, foreign affairs and the economy.
   
The Guardia Civil mainly patrols rural areas and investigates crimes there while Spain's National Police focuses on urban areas.

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POLICE

Spain’s Civil Guard police officers allowed to have visible tattoos

Spain on Monday relaxed its policy banning officers from the country's oldest police force, the Guardia Civil, from exhibiting tattoos.

civil guard spain gun
The increasing popularity of tattoos has led police forces around the world to regulate their use. Photo: Rafa Rivas/AFP

Officers will now be allowed to display tattoos anywhere on their bodies “as long as they do not contain expressions that violate constitutional values or harm the discipline or image of the force,” the interior minister said in a statement.

“For the first time visible tattoos will be allowed on uniformed officers,” it added.

On the other hand, the decree prohibits hoop earrings, spikes, plugs and other inserts when they are visible in uniform, “except regular earrings, for both male and female personnel”.

The Guardia Civil mainly patrols and investigates crimes in rural areas, while Spain’s National Police focuses on urban areas.

Last year Spain’s leftist government appointed a woman to head the force for the first time in its 177-year history.

The increasing popularity of tattoos has led police forces around the world to regulate their use.

Los Angeles police are required to ensure that tattoos are not visible to the public while on-duty, while France’s Gendarmes police force also requires that they be covered.

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