Citizens Inspections: Template
This template has been produced to help citizens inspection teams compile reports of their inspections.
It should be used as a rough guide to making a report, feel free to adapt it to suit your own particular needs.
Send any inspection reports, or comments on this template to: email@example.com
A- Reasons for Inspection
This section will give an explanation of WHY should citizen inspections take place (international law, Nuremburg principles, local laws, etc...)? WHAT is a citizen inspection? WHO is supporting citizen inspections (amongst others... people who have signed the declaration)?
B - General Details Of Inspection.
I. Site for Inspection Details
Date and time of the inspection
Place of the inspection (Country, City, Area, Name of site)
Type of site for inspection (Military base, laboratories, test site, WMD transport facilities)
"Owner" of the building that was inspected (e.g. Dutch Airforce Base at Volkel - Netherlands)
A brief history of site (When did it become operational, current purposes of the site, official and unofficial purposes of the site. Include also information of how the site contributed in any war or military aggression, especially if it is a military base, a history of civil disobedience or direct action at the base)
Alleged evidence of WMDs. Give detailed evidence why you decided to inspect the base. (Are there reports of witnessing transport or production or WMDs. Did anyone in 'power' brag about the countries arm capabilities at that site?)
Reference to pictures and maps of the base. (Label all the buildings in the site, their uses (alleged once also).
II. Inspector(s) Details
Name and Nationality of organization(s)
Organization statute and a brief history
Number of members per organization
Name and nationality of members of each organization that participated in the inspection.
C- Inspection Preparations
Were personnel at the site of inspection contacted before the inspection? (Asked for permission to search the base.) Make a reference to the appendix of what letters/emails/faxes that were send to the site for inspection and comment on the site personnel's reaction.
Give exact details of how the data was collected and the meaning of the data (for instance if you have a picture of an aircraft hanger, you should specify the uses of the hanger).
The following sections give a rough guide to some of the data that might be relevant.
I. Before entering the site
Were there police officers at the base when you arrived? How many? Reinforcements? How did they treat you?
While walking around the site, specify the buildings you saw and activity around them. Include photographs and suspected use of the buildings.
Conversations with onsite personnel are vital. Record any conversation concerning entry into the site and relation of site to WMDs. Also write a report on the responses given by the personnel when told their site is alleged of breaking international law.
II. Attempt to enter the site
Did you ask the personnel at the site to give you permission to inspect the site? Their response. Remember the appendix. Make reference to the full conversation as written in the appendix.
Explain what else happened if the entrance was not granted, for example some groups block the entrance to prevent access to a crime scene, others attempt to enter the base.
II. Entering the site
Did you enter? How? Trespassing? Opened a gate? Given permission to enter?
What happened once inspectors got in? If necessary divide the inspectors into groups. For instance one got in and got immediately arrested, while another managed to go around.
For those who managed not to get arrested immediately give a very detailed account of what they saw, documents recovered from the site, etc.
III. Obstruction faced by inspectors
Were any inspectors arrested?
How long did the arrest last?
How where you treated?
Questions and answer given by the police while arrested, (remember full details of conversation in appendix). Responses given by police when questioned about international law should be documented.
What were the legal consequences (court cases, fines, prison sentences)
As specified in the mandate, Citizen Inspectors are allowed to disarm any weapon that breaks international law. In the case that disarmament took place remember to mention :
What was disarmed?
What international treaties did the weaponry or machinery break?
E- Summarised Report
Recapitulate by mentioning again what a Citizens inspection is, skipping out exact details and quotations from Nuremburg principles, International Court of Justice Rulings, local law, ecc..
Make a list of all the evidence found that the inspected site was in breach of international law. Specify why it was breaching international law. For instance equipment used in production of WMDs is also considered illegal.
Since the report is detailed and would be send amongst others to government officials and UN, it would not be finished within hours of the inspection. Thus the media could have already given an account of what happened. Make references to what the media broadcasted.
Amongst other relevant data, it will include:
A copy of letters, faxes and emails send to and received from the personnel at the site for inspection. Such negotiations refer to the demand made to inspect the site and official declarations that the site will be inspected. (Even though as specified in the mandate, as Citizen Inspectors we have the privilege to inspect a site with prior notice, sometimes organisers choose to declare their intention to inspect a base.)
Interviews held between citizen inspectors and the site personnel during the inspection. For instance, the responses given by military personnel or police when asked to reveal any information concerning the production, stock-piling or testing of WMDs in connection to the site for inspection.
A copy of documents retrieved from the site while the inspection was carried out.
Photographs and maps of the site and it's buildings, transport facilities, machinery, chemical storage, etc.
Reading of instruments, testing for pollution. Geiger-Muller tube radioactive counts, results from soil tests, etc…
Press coverage. More credibility is given to the action, when good press coverage is given. Press coverage that promotes the goals of the inspection should be included, preferably copied into the report with reference. In the case of television of radio coverage, give the date, time and press organization, (in some countries, broadcast material may be available from the public archives of the broadcasting authority).
An "engagement declaration" or nonviolence and safety guidelines for the action.
Results of questionnaires
Declarations made to police by inspectors who were arrested
Throughout the report reference is made to the appendix. For instance, while having a full word by word description of what was said when Citizen Inspectors asked permission for entry in the appendix, a single line could be written in the report and a reference made to the appendix.
A number of citizen inspectors could decide beforehand and would commit themselves to collect data during the citizen inspection. After the inspection, the same people would meet and create a pool of data, that would have been collected during the inspection. The pool of data - appendix - would be used in compiling the report.
Friends of the Earth Flanders & Brussels (formerly For Mother Earth) is a member of Friends of the Earth International