Brazilian Marine Corps

The Brazilian Marine Corps (CFN; Portuguese: Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais, lit.'Corps of Naval Riflemen'),[1] is the land combat branch of the Brazilian Navy. The Corps is specialised in amphibious warfare.

Brazilian Marine Corps
Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais
The seal of the Brazilian Marine Corps
FoundedMarch 7, 1808; 216 years ago (1808-03-07)
Country Brazil
TypeNaval infantry
Part of Brazilian Navy
General-Command HQRio de Janeiro, Brazil
Motto(s)Adsumus (English: Here we are)
ColorsRed and white   
AnniversariesMarch 7
EngagementsInvasion of Cayenne (1809)
Banda Oriental Conquest (1816)
War of Independence (1821–1824)
Confederation of the Equator (1824)
Cisplatine War (1825–1828)
Ragamuffin War (1835–1845)
Platine War (1851–1852)
Uruguayan War (1864–1865)
Paraguayan War (1864–1870)
Naval Revolt (1893-1894)
Araguaia guerrilla (1972-1974)
Operation São Francisco (2014)
U.N. missions
Haiti (2004-2017)
Commander-in-Chief President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva
Commander of the Navy Admiral Marcos Sampaio Olsen
Commandant General of the Marine Corps Admiral Carlos Chagas Vianna Braga



Deployed nationwide, along the coast, in the riverine regions of Amazon and in the Pantanal, in peacetime it provides for the security of Naval installations and aids isolated populations through civic action programs in the Naval Districts. Abroad, it provides security for the Embassies of Brazil in Algeria, in Paraguay, in Haiti and in Bolivia. It has participated in all of the armed conflicts in the Military history of Brazil, foreign and domestic.

The badge consists of a fouled anchor superimposed over a pair of crossed rifles. It is worn on the collar points of the dress and service uniforms and on the corps Garrison Cap (Gorro de Fita).



The Royal Brigade of the Navy


The Brazilian Marines trace their origin to March 7, 1808, when the troops of the Royal Brigade of the Navy (the Portuguese Marine Corps) arrived in Brazil (then a Portuguese colony) when Mary I of Portugal and her son Prince Regent John (later King John VI of Portugal) relocated themselves to the Portuguese South American territory during the Napoleonic Wars in Europe. Therefore the Brazilian Marine Corps considers March 7, 1808, as its founding.[2]

The Brazilian Marine Corps went by several names during its history.[2]

  • Battalion of the Royal Naval Brigade (1808)
  • Battalion of Naval Artillery (1822)
  • Imperial Brigade of Naval Artillery (1826)
  • Corps of Naval Artillery (1827)
  • Corps of Naval Riflemen (1847)
  • Naval Battalion (1852)
  • Corps of Naval Infantry (1895)
  • Naval Battalion (1907)
  • Naval Regiment (1926)
  • Corps of Naval Riflemen (1932)

The baptism of fire: the conquest of Cayenne


In retaliation for the invasion of Portugal, prince regent, Dom João ordered the invasion of French Guiana, whose capital, Cayenne, was captured on January 14, 1809.

Historical campaigns

Brazilian Marines in the Battle of Riachuelo.

After Brazilian independence the force received many names and underwent various reorganisations. It was involved in several wars and campaigns: the War of the Independence of Brazil, conflicts in the River Plate basin, and the Paraguayan War. During the latter the Corps won distinction in both the Battle of Riachuelo and in the taking of Humaitá.

United Nations service


The CFN if has participated in the humanitarian actions promoted by UN in such diverse theatres of operation as Bosnia, Honduras, Mozambique, Rwanda, Angola, East Timor and currently in Haiti (MINUSTAH).

The Corps today

Brazilian Marines in formation, 2021.

Staff and mission


With about 15,000 men, all volunteers, professionals in combat on land, air and sea, its mission is to guarantee the projection of the naval power on land, by means of landings from Navy ships and helicopters. The Corps is an integral part of the Navy, encompassing about one third of its manpower. Ranks are naval instead of Army, with the exception of Privates, who are called Soldados (Soldiers).

In the case of Brazil this is a complex mission, since the country has a territory of about 8.5 million km2 (3.28 million sq. miles), a coast of more than 7,400 km (4,600 mi) with many oceanic islands, and a navigable waterways network of approximately 50,000 km (31,000 mi). This last one includes the Brazilian Amazon. To cover climates and natural landscapes so diversified as Pampas of Rio Grande do Sul, pantanal of Mato Grosso do Sul, deserts of the Northeast region and Amazon rainforest, demands a training of the highest standards, agility and versatility. Therefore, there are units trained in demolition techniques, special operations, combat in forests, mountain and ice, and helicopter-transported operations.

Trained as a Fast Deployment Unit, recently, with the sending of Brazilian military observers, also integrating the Peacekeeping Forces of the United Nations, the Marines have made their presence in distinctive areas of conflict as El Salvador, Bosnia, Angola, Moçambique, Ruanda, Peru, Ecuador, East Timor and currently Haiti.

On March 30, 2014 security forces in Rio de Janeiro occupied since the dawn of that day, the set of Shantytown Tide in the North Zone of Rio. Region is being prepared to receive the Pacifying Police Unit (UPP), Brazilian Marine Corps will provide support with 21 armored vehicles and 500 men.



The Corps headquarters is located in Fortaleza de São José, Ilha das Cobras, Rio de Janeiro.

Structure Naval Fusiliers Corps

Fleet Marine Force


The Fleet Marine Force (Força de Fuzileiros da Esquadra (FFE), literally Squadron Riflemen Force) includes the expeditionary component of the corps and consists of the following units:

  • 1st Amphibious Division (Divisão Anfíbia (DivAnf)) of brigade size with three marine infantry battalions (Batalhão de Fuzileiros Navais (BFN) as its main fighting force, along with the following:
    • Command and Control Battalion (Batalhão de Comando e Controle),
    • 1st "Riachuelo" Marine Infantry Battalion (BFN)
    • 2nd "Humaitá" Marine Infantry Battalion (BFN)
    • 3rd "Paissandu" Marine Infantry Battalion (BFN)
    • Marine Artillery Battalion (Batalhão de Artilharia de Fuzileiros Navais)
    • Marine Armoured Vehicle Battalion (Batalhão de Blindados)
    • Marine Tactical Air Control and Air Defence Battalion (Batalhão de Controle Aerotático e Defesa Antiaérea)
    • Governor's Island Marine Base (Base de Fuzileiros Navais da Ilha do Governador),
  • Reinforcement Troop (Tropa de Reforço (TrRef)) located in Ilha das Flores in São Gonçalo (RJ), composed of the following:
    • Marine Engineer Battalion (Batalhão de Engenharia de Fuzileiros Navais),
    • Marine Logistic Battalion (Batalhão Logístico de Fuzileiros Navais),
    • Amphibious Vehicles Battalion (Batalhão de Viaturas Anfíbias),
    • Police Company (Companhia de Polícia)
    • Landing Support Company (Apoio ao Desembarque)
    • Isle of Flowers Marine Base (Base de Fuzileiros Navais da Ilha das Flores),
Amphibian operations with CLAnfs.
    • Landing Troop Command (Comando da Tropa de Desembarque (ComTrDbq)), located at Duque de Caxias (RJ) - provides the means to command, control and administer the Command of the Fleet Marine Force and to also local units
  • Marine Special Operations Battalion "Tonelero" (Batalhão de Operações Especiais de Fuzileiros Navais (Batalhão Tonelero)) A unit similar to US Marine Corps Raiders, formed in 1957 and structured for high risk operations. Its mission is to destroy or damage prominent objectives in heavily defended areas, capture or rescue personnels or equipment, seize installations, obtain information, mislead and produce psychological effects.
  • Rio Meriti Marine Base (Base de Fuzileiros Navais do Rio Meriti (BFNRM)), located in Duque de Caxias (RJ)
  • ships detachments

Regional Forces


"Marine Groups" (Grupamentos de Fuzileiros Navais (GptFN) are subordinate to the Naval Districts (Distritos Navais), for the security of naval installations, as well as performing operations in support of the Naval District where they are assigned, while the 7th Marine Group is also tasked for public duties in the Brasilia area. They are located in the vicinity of the local Naval District headquarters. GptFNs are small-sized Marine battalions.

Three of the GptFNs have been expanded into Batalhoes de Operacoes Ribeirinhas (Riverine Operations Battalions) or BtlOpRibs consisting of a Command and Services Company, 3 Marine Companies, and a Combat Support Company.

Amphibious operation in river.


Musicians of the Marine Pipes, Drum and Bugle Corps

Musical support is rendered by the Central Band of the Marine Corps and the Marine Pipes, Drum and Bugle Corps in Rio de Janeiro (1st ND), the Brasilia Marine Corps Band (7th Naval District) and by the Marine Bands of each of the other Naval Districts.

Central Band of the Marine Corps


The Central Band of the Brazilian Marine Corps is the concert band unit of the CFN. Also known by its other name, the Symphonic Band of the CFN, it is the premier band of the CFN and is the senior most concert band in the armed forces. Their performances are marked by a balanced mix of popular and classical, as well as instrumental and sung songs. It is composed of two officers (the Director of Music and Bandmaster) and 118 military musicians who are NCOs. The band was created in the 1970s and belongs to the Band Company of the Naval Battalion, located at São José Fortress on Cobras Island, Rio de Janeiro.[4]

The Pipes, Drum and Bugle Corps is the official marching band of the CFN and one of the only field bands in service in the Brazilian Navy. Although it is based in Rio de Janeiro, it has taken part in all parades held in the federal capital of Brasilia, since 1960. It is notable for its use of the bagpipe, bugles, marching percussion, and the Turkish crescent in its ranks. The BMPDC has been deployed to many countries in its 100-year history, such as the United Kingdom to take part in the Coronation of Elizabeth II and France in 2005 for the Bastille Day military parade. It has also taken part in many domestic events such as the 2011 Military World Games and the 2016 Summer Olympics. The pipe portion of the BMPDC has been trained by pipe units and institutions in the United Kingdom such as the Army School of Bagpipe Music and Highland Drumming.


Brazilian Marines Corps SOF

To fulfill its missions, the Marines land off the ships of the Brazilian Navy, be it using landing boats, amphibious vehicles or helicopters. For this, they count on the support of the navy and/or sea and air support.

On land, it operates its normal way, which includes tanks, field artillery, antiaircraft artillery, combat engineering, communications and electronic warfare.



New recruits to the Corps must pass a rigorous physical training program, normally with many runs, calisthenics, sleep deprivation, swimming while holding their breath, practice shooting with diverse armaments, especially metal rings, rappeling and, in some cases, combat simulations, and when they passed all these then they achieve primary qualification as soldiers of the Corps and thus capable to fulfill the missions and responsibilities assigned to the Corps.



The Brazilian Marines wear the variation of the Brazilian Lizard Pattern, known as navy lizard. Vests: The marines for a long time used the IBA "Interceptor body armor" in woodland, but they are now being replaced by Eagle industries Maritime Ciras with Woodland Cover, and Black for SOF. For the Comandos Anfibios is also issued a green version and black version of the WTC Recon Plate Carrier. Boot: They use Atlas Atalaia combat boots, in coffee brown.


Rank group General / flag officers Senior officers Junior officers Officer cadet
  Brazilian Navy[5]
Almirante Almirante de esquadra Vice-almirante Contra-almirante Capitão de mar e guerra Capitão de fragata Capitão de corveta Capitão-tenente Primeiro-tenente Segundo-tenente
Rank group Senior NCOs Junior NCOs Enlisted
  Brazilian Marine Corps
Suboficial fuzileiro naval Primeiro-sargento fuzileiro naval Segundo-sargento fuzileiro naval Terceiro-sargento fuzileiro naval Cabo fuzileiro naval Soldado fuzileiro naval

Main Equipment


Light tank

Equipment Origin Type Versions In service Notes Photo
SK-105 Kürassier   Austria Light tank SK 105A2S
To be replaced by 2032 with 8×8 armoured fighting vehicles, a tracked vehicle, or a mixed fleet of both. [6]

Only around half of the acquired tanks remain in service.


Infantry fighting vehicles

Equipment Origin Type Versions In service Notes Photo
AAV-7A1   United States Armoured personnel carrier/Assault Amphibious AAV-7A1
To be replaced [7]  
M113   United States Armored personnel carrier M113A1
Mowag Piranha 8x8    Switzerland Armoured personnel carrier/reconnaissance Piranha-APC
Oshkosh L-ATV   United States Light tactical vehicle JLTV 8 12 on order, deliveries from 2022  


Equipment Origin Type Versions In service Notes Photo
ASTROS   Brazil Multiple Launch Rocket System AV-LMU
Known as ASTROS FN to Marine Corps  
M114   United States Howitzer M114A1 6 155mm. Study in progress for replacement by the M777 howitzer.  
L118 light gun   United Kingdom Howitzer L118 18 105mm.  
Soltam K6   Israel Mortar K-6A3 6 120mm  
M29 mortar   United States Mortar M29 A1 100 81mm  
Brandt   France Mortar Brandt ? 60mm  
Bofors 40 mm Automatic Gun L/70   Sweden Autocannon AA Bofors 40 mm 6 40mm. Using the radar Bandvagn 206  

Anti-aircraft missiles

Equipment Origin Type Versions In service Notes Photo
Mistral   France Anti-aircraft missiles Surface-to-air missile 24 systems Using the radar Bandvagn 206  
RBS 70   Sweden Anti-aircraft missiles Man-portable air-defense system 12 systems Using the radar Saber M-60  


Equipment Origin Type Versions In service Notes Photo
Saber Radar   Brazil Saber M-60 Air defense radar 1  
Bandvagn 206 with Giraffe radar 50AT   Sweden BV-206D tractor Air defense radar 1  


Name Type Quantity Origin Notes Photo
Agrale Marruá Light Utility Vehicle 450   Brazil  
Land Rover Defender Light Utility Vehicle 257   United Kingdom  
Land Rover Wolf Light Utility Vehicle 100   United Kingdom  
Land Rover Discovery Administrative Vehicle 60   United Kingdom  
Toyota Bandeirante Light Utility Vehicle 270   Brazil  
Unimog 4x4 and 6x6 Truck 248   Germany  
Unimog 5000 4x4 Truck 6   Germany 90 on order
MBB 1720 4x4 Truck 200   Brazil  
MBB 1725/42 4x4 Truck 122   Brazil  
MBB LAK1418 4x4 Truck 120   Brazil
M35 Reo 6x6 Medium Truck 56   United States  

Unmanned aerial vehicle

Name Type Quantity Origin Notes Photo
Carcara UAV UAV 40   Brazil  
Carcara II UAV 2   Brazil
Horus FT-100 UAV 2   Brazil  
Aeromot K1AM target drone ?   Brazil/  United Kingdom  
Meggitt Banshee target drone ?   United Kingdom  
Mavic UAV +20   China  


Name Type Quantity Origin Notes Photo
Harley-Davidson Road King Police Escort Motorcycle ?   United States used by Battalion of Naval Police  

Individual weapons and equipment



Origin Model Caliber Type Image
  Austria Glock 17 9×19mm (Used by SOF) Semi-automatic pistol  
  Brazil Taurus PT-92 9×19mm (Standard issue) Semi-automatic pistol  
  Brazil Taurus PT24/7 9×19mm (Used by SOF) Semi-automatic pistol  

Submachine guns

Origin Model Caliber Type Image
  Italy/  Brazil Beretta M12 9×19mm (Standard isse) (Known as MT-12) Submachine gun  
  Germany MP5 9×19mm (Used by SOF) Submachine gun  
  Israel Mini-Uzi 9×19mm (Used by SOF) Machine pistol  


Origin Model Caliber Type Image
  United States M16A2/A4 5.56×45mm Assault rifle  
  United States M4 5.56×45mm Carbine  
  United Kingdom Parker Hale M85 7.62×51mm Sniper rifle  
  France PGM Hécate II 12.7×99mm Anti-material rifle  

Machine guns

Origin Model Caliber Type Image
  United States M2 Browning machine gun 12.7×99mm Heavy machine gun  
  Belgium/  Brazil FN MAG M971 7.62×51mm General-purpose machine gun  
  Belgium FN Minimi 5.56×45mm Light machine gun  

Grenade launchers

Origin Model Caliber Type Image
  United States Mk19 40 mm Automatic grenade launcher  
  United States M203 grenade launcher 40×46mm Grenade launcher  


Origin Model Caliber Type Image
  Sweden AT4 84mm (To be replaced by the national ALAC) Anti-tank recoilless gun
  Brazil ALAC (Arma Leve Anticarro) 84mm (Going into mass production in 2012. Replacing the AT4) Anti-tank weapon  
  Sweden BILL 130mm Anti-tank missile
  Brazil MSS-1.2 130mm Anti-tank missile

Historical equipment

Equipment Origin Employee year QTD Notes Picture
EE-9 Cascavel   Brazil 1979–2000 6 Armoured car
EE-11 Urutu   Brazil 1976–2000 5 Armored personnel carrier
EE-34   Brazil 1970–1996 50 Pickup truck
EE-14   Brazil 1970–1999 ? Truck
DUKW   United States 1970–1987 34 Amphibious transport
Ford GPA   United States 1950–1985 ? Amphibious transport
Mosquefal   Brazil 1968–2000 ? Service rifle
FN FAL   Belgium/  Brazil 1970–2000 ? Battle rifle
Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR)   Belgium/  United States 1945–1970 ? Automatic rifle
Madsen machine gun   Denmark/  Brazil 1946–1980 ? Light machine gun
INA Model 953   Brazil 1950–1990 ? Sub machine gun
Mekanika Uru   Brazil 1970–1990 ? Sub machine gun

See also



  1. ^ Trevor Nevitt Dupuy (1993). International military and defense encyclopedia, Volume 1. Brassey's (US). p. 137.
  2. ^ a b Rodrigues, Haroldo Luiz (November 1966). "The Brazilian Marine Corps". Marine Corps Gazette. 50 (11). Marine Corps Association: 25–28.
  3. ^ CCSM (2018-01-25). "Futuras instalações do Grupamento de Fuzileiros Navais de São Paulo são apresentadas ao Comando Geral". Marinha do Brasil (in Brazilian Portuguese). Retrieved 2018-01-29.
  4. ^ "Banda Sinfônica do Corpo de Fuzileiros Navais se apresenta em Minas Gerais | Comando-Geral do CFN".
  5. ^ "Postos e Graduações". (in Portuguese). Brazilian Navy. Retrieved 7 May 2021.
  6. ^ "Brazilian marines details its 2032 tank replacement plan". Retrieved 2023-12-28.
  7. ^ "Brazilian marines eye wheeled Assault Amphibious Vehicle fleet". Retrieved 2023-12-28.