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Vlakplaas is a farm near Pretoria, South Africa that was the headquarters of the South African Police counterinsurgency unit C10 (later called C1) working for the apartheid government.[1]

Vlakplaas functioned as a paramilitary hit squad which captured political opponents of the apartheid government and either "turned" (converted) or executed them.[2] Vlakplaas was the site of multiple executions of political opponents of the apartheid government.[3]

Section C1: Vlakplaas
16 The unit which came to be known by the name of the farm was started in the late 1970s by Col JJ Viktor, then head of the C section, and Col Jan du Preez.
17 The purpose of Vlakplaas at this stage was ostensibly as a place to rehabilitate 'turned terrorists' or, as they were called, askaris. The askaris were eventually divided into units and supervised by white security police, and it was this change that transformed Vlakplaas into a counter-insurgency unit. The units responded to requests that were channelled to them via the head of Section C or via branch commanders.
18 In the mid to late 1980s similar units to Vlakplaas were established in Camperdown in Kwazulu Natal and in the Eastern Cape.
19 Heads of C section under which C1/Vlakplaas resided were Col JJ Viktor (later a Maj-Genl); Brig Willem Schoon; Maj-Genl Nick Janse Van Rensberg and Maj-Genl IJ Engelbrecht Commanders of Vlakplaas were: Col JJ Viktor (founder of the unit); Capt Dirk Coetzee (1980-81); Capt Jan Carel Coetzee (1982); Lt Col Jack Cronje (1983-1985) - later a brigadier); Col Eugene de Kock (1985-1993)[4]





  1. M.D. Ras, Testimony to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, 20 April 1999, accessed 10 Sept 2009
  2. Dr Ran Greenstein, ed., The Role of Political Violence in South Africa's Democratisation, Community Agency for Social Enquiry, 2003, accessed 10 Sept 2009
  3. Greg Barrow, The voice of 'Prime Evil', BBC News, Oct 28 1998, accessed 10 Sept 2009
  4. Truth and Reconciliation Commission of South Africa Report - Volume Two, Chapter Three, p317.