The State Department said on Thursday that it had yet to decide how, or if, it will replace about 1,000 private security guards from Blackwater Worldwide who have been operating in Iraq.
The Iraqi Ministry of the Interior informed the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Jan. 23 that Blackwater’s application for an operating license would not be approved and the embassy would have to find a new security company.
One possibility, the spokesman acknowledged, was shifting some of Blackwater’s work to another private security contractor.
Blackwater, of Moyock, N.C., is the largest of three firms that operate under the 2005 Worldwide Personal Protective Services contract to guard diplomats and infrastructure in Iraq. Two other U.S. companies, DynCorp International of Falls Church, Va., and Triple Canopy of Herndon, Va., also operate under the WPPS umbrella contract.
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