Iraq collects victim signatures for Blackwater lawsuit

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki

The Iraqi government has started collecting signatures from victims of incidents involving the US security company Blackwater. This recent development comes after the Iraqi prime minister publicly vowed to launch lawsuits against the security company approximately two weeks ago.

It was a reaction to the dismissal by a US federal judge of all charges held against five security guards, employed by the security company, for their involvement in an incident that resulted in the deaths of 17 Iraqis in 2007. The security guards opened fire at civilians at an intersection; they claimed to have been ambushed. Witnesses, however, claimed that the shooting was unprovoked.

The incident led to Blackwater losing its license to operate in Iraq. The company has now changed its name to Xe Services and it is under new management. The Iraqi government is looking to instigate lawsuits concerning several incidents involving the private security company.