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Most of modern police, military and military-police special operations units have specially trained and equipped diving groups or teams, within operational element. Reasons to this practice are various, but geographic position and territory configuration where a certain unit has jurisdiction, based on the laws of a national state or political entity, could be deemed as primary.
If there are water surfaces on state or political entity territory, rivers and lakes, or if a state or entity has a seashore, there is a need to organize structures within security systems, that could secure safety and security of citizens and property in these conditions as well. These are usually river polices, flotillas or navies, but also smaller, highly professional, specialist diving groups or teams at elite units. Watching the safety and security has a double aspect: the external, or international, and internal, or domestic. The first one relates to the obligation of national state or entity, which is defined through the international law, to guarantee a safe flows of people, goods, services and capital coming from abroad and traveling through water surfaces that are on the territory where national state or entity has jurisdiction. Also, this aspect involves organizing and maintaining a continuous control of people and goods flow, which could be carried out independently, or, preferably, in cooperation with neighbouring states. The internal aspect focuses on domestic citizens and goods, of course, moving within the state borders, or leaving the country.
As for the special operations units specialists diving groups or teams, their organization, training and gear primarily depend on the type and purpose of the unit (for example, a special naval unit will certainly pay more attention to the diving training, than a SWAT team). As for diving training, it can be generally divided into basic and specialist training and involves many segments that are almost generally adopted in the world, and therefore, common to many units. However, diving training within a specific unit is precisely determined by unit`s command and group or team leaders in accordance with security needs of a country, which is, again, affected greatly, by beforementioned geographical factor, as well as the funds available. Diving equipment and training, especially specialist courses, require vast financial resources, which can be a limiting factor for many units nowadays.
Generally, specialist diving groups or teams are trained and equipped to:
-suppress crime, especially acts defined as serious (hence dangerous) crimes — organized crime and terrorism
-protect infrastructure on water, or in immediate vicinity, as well as VIP protection on water, or in a land area near water
-provide professional assistance in case of natural disasters
Crime prevention is achieved through preventive activities and repressive — special operations, such as raids on hijacked vessels, diversions against infrastructure and enemy forces, EOD search and disposal, search for drowned or killed people thrown into water or immediate land vicinity, search for items associated with attempted or committed crimes, being thrown into water or near.
Expert divers can organize effective groups or teams for VIP close protection, or high-value infrastructure protection. Their special training allows them to define effective operational plans to defend infrastructure, escort and evacuation VIPs, crisis management plans etc.
Also, expert divers, when necessary, could be, relatively easily and quickly, transformed into search & rescue groups or teams that might be of great assistance in eliminating or preventing the negative consequences for citizens and their property, in cases of natural disasters.
In the end, though it is not, as a rule, defined through special purpose of these groups or teams, their expertise allows them to organize and carry out training for other units and civilians as well, something that certainly contributes to improvements of the general safety & security in the aquatic environment.