French Special Operations

Commando Parachutiste De l'Air 10 (CPA10)

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The Commando Parachutiste De l’Air 10 (CPA 10)(Commando Parachute Group No. 10) is the third Air Force unit assigned to COS. Composed of a specially trained group of French “Air Commandos”, the unit performs missions similar to those conducted by USAF Special Tactics units- (Recherche et Sauvetage au Combat(RESCO-CSAR), airfield seizure, forward air control, laser target designation, pathfinding, and airfield defense).

CPA 10 also is trained in hostage recovery/rescue and extraction. The CPA 10 is well trained to operate in various capacities (all types of terrestrial infiltration, recognition, direct action, support, combat closed mediums, technical, communications, etc).

The CPA’s

CPA 10 was originally formed in 1956.

  • CPA 10 is specialized in the tasks noted above.
  • CPA 20 is responsible for the formation and the use of gunners on board helicopters. Heir to the CPH, it has the responsibility of representing the Air Force during ceremonies. Lastly, it must provide reinforcements overseas.
  • CPA 30 is responsible for the formation and the use of Research and Rescue to Combat (RESCO). The RESCO is a mission of time of crisis which consists in going to recover a crew ejected in enemy zone.


Since 1994 this unit was committed in all the theatre of operations including Afghanistan, Albania, Kosovo, Ivory Coast, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Tajikistan, Chad, and Yugoslavia.


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