The French gendarmerie is not only present in Metropolitan France, but also in French overseas regions and territories, and participates in overseas operations (OPEX).
The gendarmerie overseas commands are based in more than 160 regional or territorial brigades. In addition to their regular day-to-day assignments in Metropolitan France, these gendarmes are called upon to perform specific duties, such as those of bailiffs or official receivers. The command brigades rely on specialized units, such as the monitoring and intervention platoons, as well as the naval, search and aeronautical squads. There are also other forces, which are specialized in interventions and the maintenance of order, and made up of soldiers from the mobile gendarmerie unit.
Furthermore, there is a troop of several guards, mostly volunteers drawn from the gendarmerie, stationed at each French embassy in the world to ensure security.
Finally, gendarmerie forces also participate in overseas operations (OPEX) whenever there is need to maintain public order, as was the case in the countries of former Yugoslavia. They equally serve as provost marshal within military units, at the regimental level. The personnel sent on overseas missions, in individual detachments, are selected from a list of volunteers.