Diving Training at the Special Anti-terrorist Unit of the Republic of Montenegro
Posted in columns: Diving Photo: D. Bozovic
Special Anti-terrorist Unit–SAU of the Republic of Montenegro is one of the most significant national security elements on the highest tactical level. Organized as an independent unit within the Directory of the Police, Montenegrin SAU plans, organizes and executes the most complex tasks and missions in order to preserve peace and security of every citizen of Montenegro.
An important part of the unit`s daily activities is carried out by specially trained and equipped diving group that is organized within the Anti-terrorist Team B of the SAU. The ability to perform operations on and below the surface of all kinds of water environments, as well as on land, makes this diving group an important part of the Special Anti-terrorist Unit and proven professionalism and reliability of the specialists increases the operability of the entire unit.
Every dive is always performed in pair or group, which is one of the most important rules of diving. Photo: Dragan Bozovic
Within this phase of their basic training, operators of the SAU will undergo training in driving and managing navigable boats that are used by SAU, as well as others that are intended for civilian or military/ law enforcement usage.
After successful completion of the basic diving course operators of the Montenegrin SAU receive titles that are defined by the CMAS program, and in upcoming years have to undergo many advanced courses which are organized and executed in the country and abroad. By the standards of the SAU at least three years of continuous improvement in this area are needed in order to create a highly skilled combat diver.
Detail from international specialist course in which divers from the SAU participated. Photo: Dragan Bozovic
An important part of the advanced training for the divers of the unit is conducted through the cooperation with units from the country and abroad. The diving group of the Montenegrin SAU has excellent cooperation, which is executed through the exchange of experiences and joint exercises, with divers from the Special Anti-terrorist Unit from the Republic of Serbia, as well as with colleagues from elite police units of the Czech Republic. In 2009 divers of the Montenegrin SAU successfully completed the anti-terrorist course organized in Florida, USA. The most important part of the course was related to exercising tactical procedures for covered entering as well as cleaning and putting under control the entire hijacked vessel. Experience and skills gained through this seminar were intelligently implemented in training programs of the SAU.
The plan and program of training for the diving group of the Montenegrin SAU must train them to perform at high level:
-dives in special conditions
-executing training and conditioning dives
-orientation and navigation underwater
-searching in water environment, as well as ground area near water
-searching for drowned persons
-executing activities in areas of limited access
-raids on hijacked vessels, especially resolving hostage situations in these terms
-providing technical and tactical assistance during natural disasters
In practice, divers of the SAU were several times activated to organize protection of the VIPs when they are located near or in territorial Montenegrin waters, as well as for searching and extracting drowned persons. In 2012 Montenegrin specialists were selflessly working and helping during the floods that hit their state. In May 2014 they quickly responded and came to help their colleagues from Serbia when great floods struck, putting the maximum of their resources available to friends from Serbia.
Divers of the Montenegrin SAU while assisting in rescue missions during large floods in the Republic of Serbia. Photo: Dragan Bozovic
Efficiency in carrying out duties and tasks of the diving group of the Montenegrin SAU is also achieved
by reliable gear that is purchased from quality manufacturers. During their dives divers wear semi-dry diving
suits Mares made from neoprene. Tanks with 18 liters of compressed air and hydrostatic regulators come from
manufacturers Apex and Mares. Diving computers are of great importance for dives and for the needs of the unit
they were purchased form the company Aladdin, while reliable diving watches come from Mares also. For the purposes of
transporting men and gear, fast Gomorico boats are being used. They are 8 meters long, with a 130 HP engine from Mercury Company.
As for weaponry, divers have access to all the models that are currently used by the Montenegrin SAU. For the purposes of tasks in this area are very suitable semi-automatic pistols Glock 17 of the fourth generation and in 9 x 19 mm Parabellum/ Luger. German SMG HK MP5, usually in A3 version with telescopic buttstock, is often carried due to its compact size. A new plan of arming and equipping should be executed in near future and a part of that should be assault rifles TM 4 in 5.56 x 45 mm NATO that come from national manufacturer Tara Mojkovac D.O.O, modelled on the American carbines Colt M4.
By continually improving working conditions as well as training, operators of the diving group of Montenegrin SAU are becoming more and more capable to execute the most complex tasks in this segment of training, so that their daily activities can be in service of humanity and security of the citizens of the Republic of Montenegro.
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