C4iSR: Joint & Common Equipment

French SOF eyes new night vision capabilities

30 January 2020

The French Special Operations Command (COS) is seeking to enhance its night vision capabilities for small teams operating in West Africa, officials have disclosed.

A pair of representatives from the COS said there is an urgent operational requirement for Africa’s Sahel region, where French special operations forces (SOF) are conducting direct action, special reconnaissance, and military assistance operations targeting violent extremist organisations.

Addressing delegates at the OPTRO conference in Paris on 28 January, an operator from the French Air Force’s CPA 10 special mission unit (who spoke anonymously owing to operational security concerns) said COS personnel relied upon image intensified (I2) binocular night vision goggles (NVGs) during ground assaults in which enemy combatants must be detected at short and long range.

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