UNMIK Police Seize Military Weapons by ygs12945

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									                                       United Nations Mission In Kosovo


     Volume 3, Issue 4
                                              Newsletter                                        July, 2001

                                             Weapons Seizure in Pec

            UNMIK Police Seize Military Weapons
                                                            any move to counter such activities has to be based on
        The geographical location of Pec/Peja, wedged       hard intelligence. But not much of that is forthcoming
between Montenegro and Albania, has a grim reflection        from FRY. So UNMIK Police have gone for the next
on the crime profile of the region in so far as it serves    best option of intensive patrolling along the border and
as an ideal transshipment point for goods smuggled          random checks of vehicles at multiple points.
between Albania and Montenegro. What is more worry-
ing is that very often the consignments smuggled are that            This method has brought definite results in the
of weapons of war which are in great demand in this con-    past and delivered one of the largest weapons hauls on
flict torn region.                                           the 14th of June. As the UNMIK Police team conducting
                                                            random searches of vehicles entering Kosovo ordered
        In the afternoon of 14 June, a truck bearing        this truck to stop, its driver panicked and fled on foot
Bosnian license plates                                                                         abandoning the vehi-
entered Kosovo from                                                                            cle. Police seized the
Montenegro through                                                                             truck and drove it to
the Kulina pass and                                                                            the Pec/Peje Customs
painfully made its way                                                                         compound for detailed
through the narrow                                                                             examination.
road     that    snakes
through the mountains                                                                            Close examina-
into Pec from where                                                                      tion by UNMIK Police
it could go along the                                                                    and the Spanish SPU
Penguin Highway to                                                                       revealed a hidden
the Cafa Prushit border                                                                  compartment under-
post leading to Albania                                                                  neath the timber,
or further on through                                                                    wherein was found a
Prizren to the Former                                                                    cache of weapons. As
Yugoslav Republic of               Cache of weapons seized in Pec on June 14
                                                                                         many as 318 Kalash-
Macedonia. Or it could Inset : Secret Compartment in truck used to conceal weapons nikov AK-47 rifles,605
have just dispersed its                                                                  AK-47       magazines,
load somewhere in Kosovo. Loaded with timber, the       1008 Rocket Propelled Grenades and 512 Hand Grenades
truck was not an uncommon sight on the route and as     were seized. An investigation involving 10 UNMIK
such served as an ideal cover for smuggling contraband. Police investigators and the Spanish SPU, is under way
                                                            to identify the end users of these weapons and those
         Kulina Pass presents a peculiar problem to the     responsible for their importation.
KFOR, Customs and UNMIK Police personnel deployed
at the checkpoint. The narrow winding mountain road                  The findings of the investigation notwithstand-
does not allow enough space for checking heavy vehi-        ing, the fact remains that those are not defensive weap-
cles. In any case, emptying every truck of its load for     ons; they are weapons of war that could only be used to
checking is not a practicable security option and thus      destabilize Kosovo and the region.
 UNMIK Police News                                                                                      July 2001
                                               Evacuating a Village

   They Braved the Bombs - They were on a ‘MISSION’
        This happened some time back, but is worth                   Seeing this, the UNMIK Police and KPS offic-
narrating here for the unique nature of the operation and   ers began a house-to-house search in an effort to locate
bold initiative of UNMIK Police and KPS Officers.            any injured villagers and evacuate those in hiding. This
                                                            action instilled confidence in the people who came out of
        On 29 March at 1030 hrs, a message was received     their homes as the officers directed them to the rendez-
at the UNMIK Police Station, Kacanik, that the village of   vous near the new school where the Polish KFOR stood
Krivenik on the mountains overlooking the Macedonian        by to assist in the evacuation.
border was under mortar attack.
                                                                    As the evacuation got smoothly underway, these
         Without losing time, two Units from the Station    officers then got down to collecting evidence of the shell-
responded to the scene. To avoid the possibility of         ing, photographing the scene and preserving the items of
both the vehicles getting                                   evidentiary value.
blocked on their way by
people fleeing the bomb-                                                                      The officers displayed
ing, each Unit took a                                                                 commendable initiative and
different route through                                                               presence of mind in their han-
20 kms of treacherous                                                                 dling of a situation one does
mountain roads and were                                                               not generally encounter in
able to reach Krivenik by                                                             the normal course of policing
1100 hrs.                                                                             duties.

         Although      the                                                                  When asked to com-
shelling had stopped by                                                              ment, Officer Mike Tutor said
the time, panic and confu-                                                           : “I am glad we were able to
sion prevailed among the                                                             help the people of Krivenik…
                            Officers receiving Commendation Certificates There is nothing more heart-
terrified villagers. About
8 mortar shells had hit in                                                           breaking than seeing civilians
and around the village, the most damage done by one that  caught up in a military attack.”
had exploded near the primary school, killing its princi-
pal and injuring members of an APTN News Crew who                 For their diligence and exemplary performance in
were conducting an interview in the area.                 the case, the UNMIK Police Commissioner has awarded
                                                          commendation certificates to the following officers :-
         Apprehending another round of shelling, the UNMIK Police -
American and Polish KFOR Units were assisting the vil- Officers Michael Tutor (USA) and Robert Van Eenaeme
lagers in evacuating the village. However, a number of (Belgium)
villagers had hidden in their homes in panic.             KPS -
                                                          Officers Fahri Vishi, Ahmet Bela and Rushan Teneqja


                       A Commitment to Children’s Rights
        UNMIK Police and KPS are pleased to join with UNICEF in re-affirming and emphasizing the
 issue of childrens rights. All Kosovo Police Stations will soon begin displaying posters summarizing the
 basic human rights that children have when they are in Police custody. The posters, in five languages,
 are designed to educate children and as a reminder to police officers.
        UNICEF and UNMIK Police have been working together for the past two years on juvenile justice
 issues. A respect for individual rights is the foundation of the police service we are creating.

                                                        -2-
UNMIK Police News                                                                                           July 2001

                                            Major Anti-Prostitution Initiative

          Cleaning Up The Back Alleys of Kosovo
        Over the past month there has been sustained            action against organized prostitution targeted the Gnji-
action against prostitution throughout Kosovo, involving        lane region. On June 23rd, five Police Stations through-
UNMIK Police working closely with K-FOR. Besides                out the region conducted a sweep of local cafes and
the regular raids, interviews and arrests carried out by the    restaurants where they had information concerning pros-
TPIU, two major operations were undertaken during the           titution. 29 businesses were raided in Gnjilane, Urosevac,
month, first in Prizren and then in Gnjilane.                    Kamenica and Vitina. 39 women from Bulgaria, Romania
                                                                and Albania were found to be working there. The women
         The first one came on the night of June 16, when        as well as owners of the businesses were interviewed.
UNMIK Police in Prizren carried out one of its largest
operations targeting prostitution and the organized traf-                A common problem for the police in such cases
ficking of women into Kosovo. Acting on Police and               is to establish that the women had actually indulged in
KFOR information a search warrant was obtained from             prostitution, except in cases where the women themselves
the Prizren District Public Prosecutor’s Office in respect       are willing to give statements to that effect. The involve-
of a number of bars and cafes where foreign women               ment of the owners of the businesses in the trafficking
were allegedly working                                                                         of these women for prosti-
as prostitutes.                                                                                tution is similarly difficult
                                                                                               to prove unless the women
        At       H-hour                                                                        testify against them.
2100, a coordinated raid
involving about 150                                                                          To address these prob-
officers took place. An                                                                   lems the TPIU in all regions
area of Prizren near the                                                                 of Kosovo has been iden-
Bus Station was sealed                                                                   tifying the foreign women
off by Argentine and                                                                     working in the suspect cafes
Ukrainian Special Police                                                                 and bars, as they constitute
Units and the MSU                                                                        the most vulnerable group
Carabinieri. 15 busi-                                                                    with respect to prostitution.
nesses within that area                                                                  They are interviewed at
were then isolated and                                                                   length by the investigators
searched by UNMIK                                                                        and are required to register
Police and the KPS. All The June 16 anti-prostitution raid in Prizren with the TPIU. This helps
occupants were ques-                                                                     keep tabs on the women
tioned and identified.                                                                    perceived to be at a high
Each location was then searched for weapons, explosives risk for subjection to prostitution. The registration of such
and drugs by trained dogs from the Ukrainian Special target groups with the TPIU helps monitor their move-
Police Unit and German K-FOR.                           ments and activities better and serves as an insurance
                                                        against their possible exploitation.
         34 foreign women were found working at these
15 bars and cafes. All were in contravention of Kosovo                  The ‘Trafficking and Prostitution Investigation
law for offences of illegal border crossing or failing to       Unit’ was set up in September 2000 as a special unit of
register with Police. No drugs, weapons or explosives           UNMIK Police to investigate crimes of this nature. It has
were found. The raid will be followed up with regular           teams of investigators working in each of the five regions
inspections by inspectors from Prizren Municipality.            of Kosovo. Its job has been made easier with the promul-
                                                                gation by UNMIK earlier this year, of a new regulation
        The next weekend, the continuing enforcement            defining trafficking and prescribing punishments.

Articles & photographs for publication in the Newsletter may be sent to unpolpress@un.org

                                                          -3-
 UNMIK Police News                                                                                       July 2001


    News in Brief
  Arrest in Dragash Bombings             of BESA Security, also in Pec/Peje.      launched throughout Kosovo, prompt-
                                         This company had ignored warnings        ing people to voluntarily surrender
        Over the last year Dragash       by UNMIK to cease its operations.        their arms and facilitating it through
has suffered an inordinate number of                                              mobile weapons collection services
bombing attacks.                                 UNMIK Police, together with      by the UNMIK Police and KFOR.
                                         the Spanish SPU and Italian KFOR,        During this period, 524 rifles, 116
        An intensive investigation by    secured the area and searched the com-   pistols, 142 support weapons, 30
the Prizren Regional Investigation       pany offices. Twenty persons were         anti-tank weapons, 25 missiles, 312
Unit led to the identification of three   detained for interview and question-     grenades and 14,377 rounds of ammu-
suspects who were involved in an         ing. Business records and equipment      nition were voluntarily surrendered.
organized bombing campaign.              were seized. The raid was conducted
                                         without resistance.                             However, a good number of
         Arrest warrants were obtained                                           small arms continue to be illegally
for these individ-                                                                                 held by people
uals. Through-                                     A Tragic Loss                                   across Kosovo. In
out Wednesday,
the 6th of June,
                    He Came, He Served ... He did not return                                       view of this, despite
                                                                                                   the end of the
Police searched                                                                                    Amnesty, UNMIK
                            On June 15th UNMIK Police suffered a tragic loss of one of
three locations                                                                                    Police and KFOR
around Dragash our officers. 42 year old Inspector Mohammed ALI of the Bangladesh have continued to
locating      and Police died suddenly at his residence in the Gnjilane region on Friday. appeal to the people
arresting      all Preliminary investigation revealed that he had died of heart attack.            to voluntarily sur-
three K-Alba-                                                                                      render their weap-
nian male sus-              Mohammed ALI had arrived in Kosovo on August 16, 2000 and ons without fear of
pects.              was involved in training the Kosovo Police Service officers in the Gnji- reprisal or legal
                    lane Region. He had just received an extension to his Mission. He action                    against
         T h e leaves behind a wife, a son and a daughter.                                         them.
three        men
detained       are                                                                                        In a two
                            All of us in UNMIK Police extend our heartfelt sympathy to his
suspected       of                                                                                 pronged approach
                    family and to the Bangladesh Police community. We thank Mohammed
being involved                                                                                     to the problem,
in at least 30      ALI for his contribution to the future of Kosovo.                              UNMIK Police has
bomb attacks in                                   Many of the security compa-                      on the one hand
the Dragash area over the past year.     nies currently operating illegally have been issuing appeals for surrender,
                                         closed business after receiving writ- and on the other, vigorously enforc-
Police Continue to Close Illegal ten notice from UNMIK. Those that ing the law against weapons offend-
        Security Companies               continue, are being weeded out by the ers through raids and seizures. In the
                                         UNMIK Police.                           one month following the expiry of
         One month ago UNMIK                                                     the amnesty period, in 82 separate
Police began a program to close down           Illegal Weapons                   cases of seizures of illegal weapons,
illegal Security Companies with a raid                                           UNMIK Police has seized 414 var-
on the offices of Jaguar Security in               On the 4th of June, the Weap- ious guns and rifles, 38 pistols, 3
Pec/Peje.                                ons Amnesty announced by UNMIK anti-tank weapons, 1,014 rocket pro-
                                         Police and KFOR ended. During the pelled grenades, 570 grenades and
         The initiative continued with amnesty period that lasted a month, 28 anti-personnel mines, besides sev-
another raid on the business premises a massive information campaign was eral thousand rounds of ammunition.

    Chief Editor : Derek Chappel              Editor : Neeraj K. Singh Design : Andreas Graf

                                                         -4-

								
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