Police Nationale

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The Police Nationale at the Bastille Day 2013 military parade.

In France the Police Nationale (in English language national police) is the state component of public safety. In contrast to the Gendarmerie Nationale personal are all civilian functionnaries of the state. The Police Nationale has several very different sub-directorates, each responsible for specific missions. In 2014 more than 143 500 peoples were members of the Police Nationale.

Missions of the Police Nationale[change | change source]

In France the Police Nationale is responsible of many missions. The first and perhaps the most important is, in French language sécurité des personnes et des biens. It translation is safety of persons and property. This is the true role of each French police officer. Like many other police services in the world the Police Nationale has many other missions : counter-terrorism, fight against illegal drug trade, riot operations, and sometime SAR missions on the French beaches and mountains, especially in the Alps.

Organization[change | change source]

The main directions of the Police Nationale are headquartered in Paris.

The Sécurité Publique[change | change source]

Police officer of the Sécurité Publique in Strasbourg.

The Sécurité Publique (in English language Public Security) is responsible of all missions of police on the French territory. For each French department, there is a departmental office. Also for Corsica and overseas departments of France. The majority of police officers conduct their mission in uniform. However, some units have the ability to act in civilian clothes, they are called BAC, for Brigade Anti-Criminalité.

The Police aux Frontières[change | change source]

It's the branch of the Police Nationale in charge of the fight against illegal immigration. The Police aux Frontières or PAF (in English language Border Police) is present in all French airports, important railway stations, and harbours. The PAF is also present for the security of the famous Channel Tunnel.

The Compagnies Républicaines de Sécurité[change | change source]

Police officers of the CRS in operation.

The Compagnie Républicaine de Sécurité, or CRS, is one of the famous direction of the Police Nationale. It's the riot unit. It's also the police directorate in charge of beaches and mountains SAR. Finally, the CRS are involved in the fight against road crime, on French motorways.

The Police Judiciaire[change | change source]

The Police Judicaire, or PJ, is in charge of criminal investigations. The Police Judiciaire (in English language Judicial Police) tasks range from research of the perpetrators of murders, rapes and robberies in the counter-terrorism. It is also in charge of the scientific police.

The Service de la Protection[change | change source]

The Service de la Protection, or SDLP, is the service of official bodyguards. The SDLP (or in English language Protection Service) is in charge of security of heads of state of the French Republic. In 2015 President of the French Republic François Hollande, French Prime minister Manuel Valls and all ministers are under protection of SDLP police officer. Some foreign ambassadors, like ambassador of United Kingdom, USA, or Israel are also under protection when they are in France.

The RAID[change | change source]

Citroën Berlingo of the Police Nationale in Nancy.

The RAID (acronym for Recherche, Assistance, Intervention, Dissuasion) is the special unit of the Police Nationale. Made famous in 1993 by a hostage-taking at a school in Neuilly-sur-Seine, it is the elite unit of the Police Nationale. Its members are almost all snipers. In January 2015 the RAID participated in the hunt for terrorists responsible for the attack against the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and the murder of a young policewoman. They led an assault against one of the terrorists holed up in a kosher store in Vincennes, releasing all hostages unharmed.

Vehicles[change | change source]

If the Police National has not helicopter it has many cars, vans, motorbikes, boats and special vehicles. When police officers need to use an helicopter, they call the Sécurité Civile and their red and yellow Eurocopter EC145. Cars of the Police Nationale are made by Citroën, Dacia, Ford, Peugeot, and Renault. Motorbikes are BMW and Yamaha.