Iraq Denies Blackwater New Security License

The Iraqi government will not renew the license of Blackwater Worldwide, the private security firm accused of killing Iraqi civilians while protecting U.S. diplomats in Iraq.

Blackwater was accused of using excessive force for several years in Iraq. But anger at the firm peaked in 2007, when its guards were accused of killing at least 14 unarmed civilians on a crowded street. The firm has stated that the guards were responding to an attack on a State Department convoy.

The U.S. embassy in Iraq is working on new security arrangements for its diplomats. While the timeline for replacing Blackwater has not been announced, U.S. officials may have as long as six months to arrange a replacement.

Five former Blackwater guards are being tried on federal charges related to the 2007 incident; a sixth, who has pled guilty to manslaughter charges, is cooperating with the U.S. government.

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