United Nations

UN Police

Formed Police Units

A Formed Police Unit (FPU) is a team of 140 police officers, which is deployed as a group, who undertake crowd control, protect UN staff and material and escort UN personnel when they must visit insecure regions of a mission area.

UN Police officers wearing uniforms and carrying shields while walking in grass.

UNOCI and French forces conduct crowd control exercises. UN Photo/Ky Chung

The first Formed Police Units were first deployed in the United Nations Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) and in the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) in 1999, where the UN had full responsibility for enforcing the law and dealing with threats to public order. The deployment of Formed Police Units has increased from two units in 2000 to more than 60 in 2010, comprising more than 6,000 police officers.

FPUs are rapidly deployable, well equipped and trained to act as a cohesive body capable of responding to a wide range of contingencies. They are self-sufficient, able to operate in “high-risk” environments and are deployed to accomplish policing duties such as crowd control rather than to respond to military threats.