KGB Chairman Yuri Andropov authorized the formation of group Alfa on 28 July 1974 via a unique, hand-written letter. Officially designated Group A, the media came to refer to the unit as "Alfa" after 1991.
This unit has taken part in virtually all hostage rescue operations in Russia since its formation.
The decision on creation of group Vympel ( Pennant ) was accepted at the closed session of ministerial Council USSR and agency of the central committee communist party of the Soviet Union.
Missions of group: realization reconnaissance - subversive operations, struggle with terrorist and guerilla groups in territory of other states, protection and evacuation of the citizens and establishments USSR abroad, capture of the important objects of the opponent (HYDROELECTRIC POWER STATION, NUCLEAR POWER STATION, chemical and enterprises of oil etc.), protection of the important objects against the saboteurs of the opponent. All these operations should be conducted at interaction with intelligence investigation. During war in Afghanistan the employees were occupied with investigation, data gathering, acts of sabotage. They have penetrated into groups of mujahideen, Pushed together
groups among themselves, order a misinformation, freed the soldier from captivities. In 1991 to problems of group the problem on clearing of the terrorists of the grasped important objects was added.