BRussells Tribunal www.brusselstribunal.org/
FPS in Samawa, Iraq. Yahoo photo
What is the Facilities Protection Service?
The establishment of the ‘Facilities Protection Service’ was on 04.10.03, according to Paul Bremer’s Coalition Provisional Authority Order Number 27 (see appendix one).
This document says that “The FPS may also consist of employees of private security firms who are engaged to perform services for the ministries or governorates through contracts, provided such private security firms and employees are licensed and authorized by the Ministry of Interior as provided in Section 7 herein.”
According to Global Security.org, “The Facilities Protection Service works for all ministries and governmental agencies, but its standards are set and enforced by the Ministry of the Interior. It can also be privately hired. The FPS is tasked with the fixed site protection of Ministerial, Governmental, or private buildings, facilities and personnel. The FPS includes Oil, Electricity Police and Port Security.
The majority of the FPS staff consists of former service members and former security guards. The FPS will now secure public facilities such as hospitals, banks, and power stations within their district. Once trained, the guards work with US military forces protecting critical sites like schools, hospitals and power plants.”
Which private security firms are operating in Iraq?
There are about 30 known private security firms working in Iraq. These include:
Sourcewatch information on Aegis: “Aegis Defence Services was initially awarded a $293 million contract by the Pentagon in May 2004 to act as the ‘coordination and management hub’ for the fifty-plus private security companies in Iraq. As of December, 2005, that contract was worth in excess of $430 million. They also contributed seventy-five teams of eight armed civilians each to assist and protect the Project Management Office of the United States. They also provided protection for the Oil-for-Food Program inquiry.”
Sourcewatch on Blackwater. “Blackwater is one of two companies which make up The Prince Group, the other being Prince Manufacturing. … The Prince Group bought Aviation Worldwide Services. AWS consists of STI Aviation, Inc., Air Quest, Inc., and Presidential Airways, Inc. These companies provide the logistical and air support for Blackwater operations. Blackwater itself consists of Blackwater Training Center, Blackwater Target Systems, Blackwater Security Consulting and Blackwater Canine.”
Blackwater vs. Fallujah
Najaf was also affected. Sourcewatch says: “According to Russel Mokhiber and Robert Weissman, a few days after the Fallujah killings, “Blackwater Security Consulting engaged in full-scale battle in Najaf, with the company flying its own helicopters amidst an intense firefight to re-supply its own commandos. … The increased scrutiny of security firms led Blackwater to hire the Alexander Strategy Group (now involved in three “K Street” scandals) for crisis management, public and media relations.”
For a shady story that gets progressively darker, see IRAQ: Blood is Thicker Than Blackwater
Erinys Iraq Ltd
Sourcewatch information on Erinys “Erinys Iraq Ltd, which won an $80 million contract last August from the Coalition Provisional Authority to provide security for the oil infrastructure in Iraq, has had some powerful alliances in Iraq.
Erinys set up a Joint Venture with Nour USA Ltd. Nour’s founder is Abul Huda Farouki, a wealthy Jordanian-American who lives in northern Virginia and whose companies have done extensive construction work for the Pentagon.
Farouki’s businesses established $12 million of loans from the Petra International Banking Corporation in the 1980s, which was managed at the time by Ahmed Chalabi’s nephew, Mohammed Chalabi. The Jordanian government says this was part of a massive embezzlement scheme involving Chalabi and a bank he owned in Jordan.
A founding partner and the director of Erinys Iraq is Faisal Dhaghistani. Faisal is the son of Tamara Daghistani, who played a large role in the development of Ahmed Chalabi’s Iraqi National Congress.
The firm’s counsel in Baghdad has been Chalabi’s nephew, Salem Chalabi.
Many among the 14,000 guards recruited by Erinys to protect the oil infrastructure came directly from the Iraqi Free Forces, a militia that had been loyal to Chalabi’s movement.”
Following is an up-to-date State Department list  of 27 further known security firms working in Iraq:
AD Consultancy (which firm?) (UK)
Where is training for the Facilities Protection Service (”death squads”?) taking place?
“19/5 Battery: “Maj. A. J. Layden is responsible for the Facilities Protection Service (FPS). The Battery oversees a wide range of activities; from working with the border guards away to the east of Basra, to running training courses for the FPS. Sgt Duncan’s multiple (sic) is one that has been tasked with this FPS training task. He and his team have already run four five-day courses which include foot drill, weapon handling, basic first aid and vehicle check point drills. The aim throughout each course is to raise confidence amongst the men of the FPS in basic standards and encourage good practice. At the end of each course, the top students have been selected to receive further instruction to educate them how to lead future courses. Sgt Duncan and his team are now reaping the rewards of their hard work with Iraqi FPS staff leading the most recent course under their guidance. “ (There is no date on this communication.)
Col. Jon Brockman said (21.01.04) “that those achievements include recruiting, training, equipping and employing 2,900 Iraqis as Facility Protection Services guards.”
A photo tour of Camp Mercury can be seen here The photo of the prisoner compound has been deleted.
Global Security says: “Forward Operating Base [FOB] Mercury is an abandoned Iraqi military base and a former Iranian terrorist training camp, located midway between Baghdad and Fallujah.”
“TF 1-504 operates out of FOB Mercury. They are responsible for several towns west of Baghdad, including the external security of the largest prison and detention facility in Iraq. TF 1-504 recently started training Iraqi Facility Protection Service guards. This is a program to train and equip Iraqis so they can begin guarding their own critical facilities, such as police stations, food warehouses, oil storage depots, etc. … A class of twenty-five Iraqis completed the Facilities Protection Force (FPS) program 11 October 2003 at Forward Operating Base Mercury. The group of students is the first to participate in the three-day course. Upon their graduation, they became an integral part of the Iraq rehabilitation process. …”
“There have been allegations made that between 2003-2004 at Camp Mercury U.S. military personnel engaged in routine and widespread physical punishment towards Iraqi detainees. It is alleged that enlisted men conducted beatings of prisoners prior to questioning, forced strenuous exercises to the point of unconsciousness and exposed detainees to extremes of heat and cold. These alleged methods were employed to produce greater cooperation with interrogators some of whom were apparently members of the CIA. As of September 2005 the U.S. Army was conducting an investigation on what exactly happened at Camp Mercury. Some military personnel also claim that these actions were also used as a form of stress relief from the war.”
An Najaf area, two hundred one facility protection service guards graduated from security training on 03 July 2003. Sixty-seven guards will work at oil and gas facilities and 134 will work at hospitals. On 29.08.03, the mosque in Najaf was bombed.
The 11th MEU commander declared Nov. 30 (04) that Iraqi security forces have formally assumed local control of An Najaf province. Col. Anthony Haslam said, “In the past three months, they have demonstrated their ability to keep this province and its citizens safe and secure.” As of 09.12.05, The Iraqi army had the primary responsibility for security in Najaf and Karbala, but full control had not yet been handed over.
06.14.06. Car bombing. 10 people killed near Shi’ite Muslim shrine.
Further Najaf security matters can be seen here
There is no further detailed information about where the FPS members are being trained. There is, however, further information about Training Camps for Iraqis. For example, see the description of Camp David, where Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT), emergency response, and dignitary protection, similar to functions carried out by the U.S. Secret service, take place. Black masks are ‘de rigour’ (see photo). These camps will be detailed in my research on US bases in North/South/East/West Iraq.
APPENDIX ONE: PAUL BREMER’S ORDER NUMBER 27:
… The FPS is an organization of trained, armed, uniformed entities charged with providing security for ministry and governorate offices, government infrastructure, and fixed sites under the direction and control of governmental ministries and governorate administrations.
Section 2: Organization of the FPS
1) Governmental employees employed by the ministries or governorates are eligible to serve in the FPS. The FPS may also consist of employees of private security firms who are engaged to perform services for the ministries or governorates through contracts, provided such private security firms and employees are licensed and authorized by the Ministry of Interior as provided in Section 7 herein. Persons who have participated in Ba`ath Party activity within the leadership tiers described in CPA Order Number 1, De-Ba`athification of Iraqi Society (CPA/ORD/16 May 2003/01) may not serve in the FPS in any capacity except by the express grant of an exception by the Coalition Provisional Authority.
2) Ministers and heads of governorate administrations shall determine the need for FPS members at locations under their supervision. Each ministry or governorate administration is responsible for ensuring the FPS branch under its supervision is sufficient to protect key sites for which it is responsible, with the additional support of police or other forces in times of emergency.
3) Ministries and governorate administrations are responsible for the funding of FPS members assigned to their agency. Ministries and governorate administrations are responsible for the supervision and control of the FPS force assigned to their governmental agency, consistent with the standards and regulations established by the Ministry of Interior.
4) Governorates will establish Regional Operations Centers to coordinate the operations of FPS guards and to ensure their proper integration with police and other emergency services.
5) The Ministry of Interior will establish standards and training for the FPS including standards and training for private security firms performing FPS duties pursuant to contracts.
Pursuant to this Order, the Ministry of Interior will issue FPS
6) FPS organizations may be known by different names including, for example “Electricity Police,” “Diplomatic Protective Services,” or “Oil Police” but each will have only the specific powers and authorities granted in this Order.
7) Members of the FPS may not participate in any manner in organizations or activities that advocate racial, gender or ethnic hatred or intolerance; advocate, create, or engage in illegal discrimination based on race, color, gender, religion, or regional origin; or use, or advocate the use of, force or violence or other unlawful means to achieve internal political goals. Violations may result in the removal of the member from employment in the FPS or the withdrawal of the authorization for the member to perform FPS responsibilities as a member of a private security firm.
Section 3: Authority of the FPS
1) Members of the FPS may, while performing their official duties, apprehend persons who (i) they witness committing or attempting to commit a criminal offense, (ii) have escaped after being lawfully arrested, or (iii) otherwise interfere with their lawful activities. Persons apprehended by the FPS must be turned over to the Iraqi police or Coalition Forces within twelve hours of apprehension or be released.
2) Members of the FPS may, while performing their official duties, conduct reasonable searches for weapons or other dangerous or prohibited items of persons entering or within the governmental property or offices they are securing, criminal suspects in their custody, or vehicles entering or within the governmental property or offices they are securing.
3) Members of the FPS may, while performing official duties, use force against persons or things as is reasonable and necessary under the circumstances. However, the use of force that may be likely to cause death or serious bodily injury is not permitted unless the member reasonably believes that using such force is necessary to: (i) protect himself or others from the imminent use of deadly force or force likely to cause serious bodily injury, (ii) prevent the escape of a person suspected of committing murder or assault resulting in serious bodily injury, or (iii) defend ministry or governorate offices, government or state-owned infrastructure, and fixed sites under the direction and control of governmental ministries and governorate administrations, to prevent their destruction or incapacitation.
Section 4: Jurisdiction
1) Members of the FPS will be subject to Iraqi law at all times, and the courts of Iraq shall have jurisdiction over offenses alleged to have been committed by members of the FPS. The Administrator of the CPA may determine that offenses alleged to have been committed by members of the FPS while on duty may be submitted to the Central Criminal Court of Iraq in accordance with CPA Order Number 13 (Revised), The Central Criminal Court of Iraq (CPA/ORD/13 July 2003/13).
2) Members of the FPS shall enjoy immunity from civil liability for acts or omissions arising within the scope of their duties and in the conduct of authorized operations to the same degree as other governmental officials under the law of Iraq.
Section 5: Weapons
CPA/ORD/4 September 2003 / 27
The UK was criticized for starting the Basra turmoil in 10.05. Two SAS, part of a 24-member team, were discovered with explosives in the back of their car. They were dressed in Arab clothing. See Basra Shadowlands
“Majid al-Sari, an adviser to the Iraqi Ministry of Defence, describing the situation in Basra to the daily al-Zaman, said that on average one person (in Basra) was being assassinated every hour … The governor of Basra, Mohammed Misbahal-Wa’ili, is trying to sack the city’s police chief, claiming that the police have not carried out a single investigation into hundreds of recent assassinations,” according to Patrick Cockburn (17.05.06) in The Independent
On March, 06, a security contractor in Tikrit was arrested with a “Do It Yourself Car Bomb Kit” in his BMW. What was he going to blow up? Was this going to be a “suicide bombing?” How many ‘suicide bombings’ are actually caused by ‘security’ mercenaries, ordered to do so by the US/UK government?
Headline (05.06). “Baghdad: American security contractors shot dead an Iraqi ambulance crewman on Tuesday when they opened fire on his vehicle after a roadside bomb blasted their convoy.” Which security firm did this? According to the Geneva Convention, it is a war crime to kill ambulance crew members.
Hospitals, as well as ambulances, have been bombed (also against the Geneva Convention). The excuse given is that they ‘harbour terrorists.’
Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt defended raiding al Tabul mosque in 01.04 because, he said, “Iraqi citizens had identified it as a hub of insurgency operations.” One has to extend this excuse, and ask, ‘Are mosques also bombed by security forces because they ‘harbour terrorists?’ Such charges have been made.
The Khadamiya shrine, according to Newsweek (24.04.06) is guarded by the FPS. “Not one ministry contacted by Newsweek would accept overall responsibility for the FPS.” If Bremer created the FPS, then isn’t the coalition is responsible for the FPS?
No prosecution? Bremer’s Order 27 exempts security contractors as well as the Facilities Protection Service: “Members of the FPS shall enjoy immunity from civil liability for acts or omissions arising within the scope of their duties.”
How many Security (sic) people are there in total? How many of these belong now, or have belonged in the past, to the Special Forces / SAS? How many of these have put Car Bomb Kits in the back of their car? How many have carried out assassinations? How many ‘Kill For Fun’ (like Aegis)?
Are any of these ‘security’ people responsible for the 190 academic and 225 health worker assassinations? See www.brusselstribunal.org for details of these assassinations.
Is the increase in number of security companies / FPS directly related to / causing the increase of violence in Iraq?
Negroponte supports FPS
The most important articles, with excellent links, are by Max Fuller:
 Throughout this article you will notice a variation of given numbers, dependent on the source. However, these numbers are not unbearably far apart.
Sarah Meyer is a researcher living in Sussex, UK