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Special Forces

GIGN – French Counter-Terrorists in Action

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GIGN (National Gendarmerie Intervention Group) are France’s Special Forces. The organization was created in 1972 in response to the hostage situation at the Munich Olympic Games. The group become fully operational in 1974 and today number around 400 individuals. Once selected, each individual on the group spends at least 14 months training in areas of weapons handling, combat and marksmanship training, airborne activities, hand-to-hand combat, undercover tactics, escape techniques, infiltration strategies, and much much more. Past operations have included rescuing 30 school children held hostage in Djibouti, catching war criminals in Bosnia, engaging Somali pirates and, of course, the sensational rescue of 229 travelers who were taken prisoner on board Air France flight 8969 in Marseille in 1994.

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