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2003-09-09

"Guarding the Oil Underworld in Iraq" – U.S. Hires Private Security Firm in Iraq; WTO Protesters Head to Cancun

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We go to Cancun, Mexico to hear from Pratap Chatterjee of CorpWatch.org on a private security firm recently contracted by the U.S. to train 6,500 Iraqis to guard oil pipelines in Iraq and to discuss the upcoming WTO ministerial meeting.

A private security firm is being contracted in Iraq to train 6,500 Iraqis to guard oil pipelines, wellheads, and refineries as well as water and electrical facilities. This comes after a recent attack on an oil pipeline in northern Iraq.

Private security firms in oil-rich regions have long been accused of complicity in human rights violations in countries like Columbia, Nigeria and Angola.

A recent article Corpwatch’s Pratap Chatterjee "Guarding the Oil Underworld in Iraq" outlines Erinys’ blurred relationship with the Coalition Provision Authority.

Pratap Chatterjee joins us today from Cancun, Mexico where the ministers from the World Trade Oraganization’s 146 member states are meeting. Thousands of people are heading to Cancun to protest the meeting. The demonstrators will be demanding comprehensive reforms to an international trade system that has failed to improve the social and economic conditions for millions around the globe.

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