The OMSN (Otryad Militsii Spetsial'nogo Naznacheniya, Special Police Unit), formerly known as the Special Rapid Response Unit or SOBR (Russian – специальные отряды быстрого реагирования = Spetsial'nye Otryady Bystrogo Reagirovaniya), is a spetsnaz unit of the Russian Interior Ministry ( MVD). SOBR also continues to exist in Belarus and as of 2006 was headed by Dmitri Pavlichenko.
OMSN was initially formed as SOBR on February 10, 1992, and was subordinated to the "Directorate for combating the Organized Crime" under the MVD.
SOBR units were composed of senior-ranking police officers, better trained than the members of OMON (which is a cross between riot police and paramilitary police), and tasked with SWAT type special operations under the jurisdiction of MVD. They also fought during the wars in Chechnya.
On September 16, 2002, the SOBR was in the process of being dissolved and the SOBR units have been reclassified as OMSN and subordinated to the regional criminal police offices. Due to the popularity of the name, as well as the similarities between SOBR and OMSN, the OMSN is usually still referred to as SOBR by both its officers and civilians alike.
Since the establishment of the SKR, Investigative Committee, the unit is cooperating with the Federal investigative authorities.
In 2007, in Russia there were 87 units OMSN, counting over 5,000 officers stationed in major Russian cities, the most famous unit of the formation is OMSN "Rys" (Russian ОМСН "Рысь"), established in 1992, which since its inception participated in almost all known special operations in Russia.