4th Foreign Regiment

4e RE insignia4e Régiment Étranger, 4e RE. The 4th Foreign Regiment is a training unit of the French Foreign Legion. It provides a four-month-long basic training for enlisted volunteers. The 4e RE also provides military occupational speciality instructions for currently serving legionnaires, and courses and instructions for future corporals and NCOs of the Legion.

The training unit of the Legion (at the time called Training Group, GILE) moved from Corsica to Castelnaudary in Southern France in late 1976. In 1980, it got the current title. Since 1986, the regiment has been stationed in the modern Quartier Capitaine Danjou, on the outskirts of Castelnaudary.

The 4th Foreign Regiment draws its lineage, attributes and traditions from a notable unit, the 4th Foreign Infantry Regiment (4e REI), which was created in Morocco in 1920 and disbanded in Algeria in 1964.

4th Foreign Regiment promotion


History of the 4th Foreign Regiment

In mid-1955, the Foreign Legion Training Group (Groupement d’Instruction de la Légion Étrangère, GILE) was activated in Algeria (North Africa), at the time an integral part of France. Following the end of the Algerian War, the group left Africa and was stationed in Bonifacio and Corte on the island of Corsica. In October 1976, it left Corsica and moved to mainland France. Since late November 1976, the GILE had been based in the Quartier Lapasset (also Caserne Lapasset), an old barracks in the center of the town.

Nine months later, on September 1, 1977, the group became the Foreign Legion Training Regiment (RILE). Three years later, on June 1, 1980, the RILE was retitled and became the 4th Foreign Regiment. From April 1984 to May 1986, a new modern headquarters of the 4e RE were being constructed on the outskirts of Castelnaudary. In July 1986, the new barracks received its first enlisted volunteers to pass their basic instruction there.

Learn more detailed information:
Foreign Legion’s training units: From Corsica to Castelnaudary.


Current structure of the 4th Foreign Regiment

The regiment is divided (in 2023) into 7 companies, consisting of approximately 1,200 men. It includes around 500 permanent personnel, and nearly 700 enlisted volunteers, military occupational specialists, and future cadres. A reserve company comprising non-Legion reservists is also assigned to the 4e RE.

The 4th Foreign Regiment serves as a training unit of the French Foreign Legion. It is tasked with three main missions. First, the initial training for new recruits. Within the regiment, enlisted volunteers pass the intense training program of physical and mental preparation for service in the Legion; this program lasts 16 weeks. Second, the regiment provide a number of advanced courses for already serving legionnaires (truck driver course, signal course, combat medic course, cooking course, etc.), lasting from two weeks to four months. Third, the 4e RE trains the future corporals of the Legion during a two-month corporal course, and also trains the future sergeants of the Legion during a four-month sergeant course.

Each Enlisted Volunteer Company (CEV) operates one Ferme, a former farm in the remote countryside where enlisted volunteers have to pass their first four weeks of basic training. The 4e RE also manages a mountain outpost based at Formiguères in the Pyrenees. During their basic training, enlisted volunteers spend a week of a mountain instruction there.

The 4th Foreign Regiment is directly subordinated to the Foreign Legion Command (COMLE). In the time of war, the regiment would be redesignated the 4e REI (Infantry) and would serve as an infantry unit.

In 2023, the 4e RE is composed of:

  • HQ & Service Company (Compagnie de Commandement et des Services, CCS)
  • 1st Enlisted Volunteer Company (1re Compagnie d’Engagés Volontaires, 1re CEV)
  • 2nd Enlisted Volunteer Company (2e Compagnie d’Engagés Volontaires, 2e CEV)
  • 3rd Enlisted Volunteer Company (3e Compagnie d’Engagés Volontaires, 3e CEV)
  • Team Leader Training Company (Compagnie d’Instruction des Cadres, 4e CIC)
  • Specialist Training Company (Compagnie d’Instruction des Spécialistes, 5e CIS)
    • CIS operates, besides other things, Driver Training Center (Centre d’Instruction et
      d’Entraînement à la Conduite
      , CIEC), a driving school for legionnaires
  • 6th Reserve Company (6e Compagnie de Réserve, 6e CIE)


NICKNAME: L’école de la Légion (School of the Legion)
MOTTO: “Ad Legionem Aedificandam” (To build the Legion)
REGIM. MARCH: C’est le “4”
OFFIC. FB PAGE: 4e Régiment Étranger
FFL INFO POSTS: 4e RE’s category


Location of the 4th Foreign Regiment



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