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Mud at the feet, the "security" company of EUFOR RCA almost formed

Guardia Civil and French gendarmes in briefing (credit: ECPAD / National Gendarmerie)
Men of the Guardia Civil and French Gendarmes in briefing before patrol… mud on their feet (credit: ECPAD / National Gendarmerie)

(BRUSSELS2) The EUFOR Rca gendarmerie detachment is almost fully operational. The last elements - the Polish military gendarmes - should leave Warsaw on Friday (June 13) to reach Bangui.

A first in a European operation

It is a first in a European military operation to have an entire detachment of gendarmes, trained and dedicated to the practice of maintaining order, arrest and investigation (with the exception of the EULEX civilian mission in Kosovo). The detachment, commanded by Colonel Massiot (from the Orléans gendarmerie group), will then include two French platoons, from the 14/1 mobile gendarmerie squadron of Versailles-Satory, a platoon from the Spanish Civil Guard and the platoon of Polish military “Żandarmerii”, and an intelligence and criminal investigation cell (composed in particular of departmental gendarmes).

This force will ensure area control » in the 3rd and 5th arrondissements – areas allocated to the European force, according to the French side. She will support the Central African gendarmes to “ restoring order". But it can also intervene in support of the local judicial technical police », particularly in terms of forensic science and investigation (help with crime scene management, fingerprinting, etc.).

Soldiers from the Guardia Civil have already been on site in Bangui since May 28. The Spanish detachment – ​​which includes 25 officers from the Guardia Civil – and also 50 men from the special forces (who will serve as an extraction and rapid intervention force to EUFOR CAR) is placed under the command of Admiral Teodoro López Calderón.

For the French gendarmes, it is mainly a change of caps. The gendarmes had been deployed between the end of March – for the first “harpoon” element and mid-April in Bangui, as part of the Sangaris force. They thus assured “ various area control and support missions for Central African gendarmes in Bangui and Bria » we specify to the General Staff of the Armed Forces, as well as a “ technical support in judicial police with MISCA in Bouar ". The transfer of authority took place at the M'Poko camp on May 26, under the respective authority of General Soriano, commander of the Sangaris force, and General Lion, commander of the EUFOR force. Note that one of the French gendarmerie platoons is commanded by a woman.

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

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Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).

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