ATLAS Network

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Motto All together to protect you
Formation 2001[1]
Purpose Police tactical unit co-operation
Region served
Parent organization
European Union

The ATLAS network is an association of the police tactical units of the 28 Member States of the European Union established following the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001 upon the initiative of the Police Chiefs Task Force.[1][2] ATLAS was initially informally established for information exchange and training activities co-operation between units and was later formalised by a Council decision in 2008 that also expanded ATLAS functions to include provision of assistance upon request to another Member State.[1][2][3]

ATLAS uses the terms special intervention unit and crisis situation defined as:-

  • 'Special intervention unit' is any law enforcement unit of a Member State which is specialised in the control of a crisis situation;[1]
  • 'Crisis situation' is any situation in which the competent authorities of a Member State have reasonable grounds to believe that there is a criminal offence presenting a serious direct physical threat to persons, property, infrastructure or institutions in that Member State in particular situations combating terrorism.[1]

ATLAS recognises that a Member State may not have the means, resources or expertise to deal effectively with all crisis situations, in particular large crisis situations, and provides a framework for a Member State to request assistance from another member State.[1]


Unit Country
ARAS  Lithuania
BOA  Poland
BSIJ  Romania / Jandarmeria
Politiets Aktionsstyrke  Denmark
DSI  Netherlands
DSU  Belgium
ATJ Lučko  Croatia
EAO  Cyprus
EKAM  Greece
EKO Cobra  Austria
ERU[4]  Ireland
GIGN  France / National Gendarmerie
GIS  Italy / Carabinieri
GEO and Special Intervention Unit(UEI-GC)  Spain / National Police
GOE  Portugal
GSG 9  Germany / Federal Police
Karhu  Finland
K-Commando  Estonia
ÚOU (Lynx Commando)  Slovakia
NI  Sweden
NOCS  Italy / National Police
OMEGA  Latvia
RAID  France / National Police
SEP/Red Panther  Slovenia
SCO19  United Kingdom
SEK  Germany / Baden-Württemberg State Police
Special Intervention Unit (SIU)  Malta
GSPI  Romania / National Police
SOBT  Bulgaria
TEK  Hungary
UEI  Spain / Guardia Civil
URNA  Czech Republic
USP  Luxembourg
Víkingasveitin  Iceland

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f "On the improvement of cooperation between the special intervention units of the Member States of the European Union in crisis situations". Council Decision No. 2008/617/JHA of 23 June 2008. Retrieved 26 May 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Seminar of the ATLAS network of European special intervention units". Presidency of the Council of the European Union. October 2008. Archived from the original on 8 October 2011.
  3. ^ Block, Ludo (15 March 2007). "Europe's Emerging Counter-Terrorism Elite: The ATLAS Network". Terrorism Monitor. The Jamestown Foundation. 5 (5). Retrieved 7 October 2017.
  4. ^ Ferry, Declan (17 April 2013). "Garda crack squad that will protect Obama | Elite units on dry run for G8 summit". Irish Mirror Newspaper. Retrieved 4 May 2014.

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