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Sié Chéou-Kang CenterPrivate Security Monitor

An expert from ArmorGroup (left) trains local members of the Nepal and Maoist Armies on the safe removal of unexploded devices.
<< February 2015 Archive Archive Main April 2015 Archive >>

Former Blackwater gets rich as Afghan drug production hits record high 
The Guardian (Australia)  |  31 March 2015
> In a war full of failures, the US counternarcotics mission in Afghanistan stands out: opiate production has climbed steadily over recent years to reach record-high levels last year. Yet there is a clear winner in the anti-drug effort – not the Afghan people, but the infamous mercenary company formerly known as Blackwater.

New Nigerian leaders need to focus on maritime security as well as Boko Haram 
The Load Star  |  31 March 2015
> Nigerian elections are taking place against a backdrop of instability in the north, nationwide corruption and economic woes born of the sharp fall in crude oil prices and a struggling naira. This backdrop may also consist of an under-resourced maritime sector crisis, which for the good of all Nigeria, needs the careful attention of the soon-to-be elected leader, whoever that might be.

Nigeria’s Election: Brought To You By These Hired Guns 
Foreign Policy  |  27 March 2015
> For the militants of Boko Haram, 2015 began like most any year: with death and chaos. Three days into the New Year, the Nigeria-based Islamist terrorist group attacked Baga, a Nigerian town on the banks of the Lake Chad, shared by Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger. It was one of Boko Haram’s most devastating attacks ever, leaving up to 2,000 people dead in its wake. That was unsurprising for an insurgency that spent most of last year overrunning countless towns and villages in Nigeria’s northeast, seizing control an area believed to be as large as Belgium.

Nigeria: Vote 1 for Maritime Security 
The Maritime Executive  |  27 March 2015
> The March 28 Nigerian elections are taking place against a backdrop of instability in the north, nation-wide corruption, and economic woes born of the sharp fall in crude oil prices and the naira, Nigeria’s currency, which is now trading at roughly 200 to the U.S. dollar. I would suggest that this backdrop also consists of an under-resourced maritime sector crisis, which for the good of all Nigeria needs the careful attention of the soon-to-be elected leader, whoever that might be.

Tanzania: Maritime Security Hinges Upon Joint Efforts 
Hellenic Shipping News  |  27 March 2015
> Fighting against maritime piracy in the Indian Ocean is a tasking issue, which needs global cooperation among countries. This war is not the undertaking of a single country, but a task of the whole civilised world . There is need to build a strong force to fight piracy, taking into account many incidences of piracy happening along the Gulf of Aden which is not geographically far from Tanzania and considering the impact of the substantial amount of money laundered in economies of the world and the East Africa.

South African Mercenaries Play Crucial Role In Fight Against Boko Haram 
NPR  |  26 March 2015
> (Audio) The Islamist group Boko Haram has recently been pushed out of villages and towns in northern Nigeria. Renee Montagne talks to Adam Nossiter, the West Africa bureau chief for The New York Times.

Ukraine Billionaire Governor Quits Amid Clash Over Companies 
Bloomberg  |  25 March 2015
> Poroshenko also signed legislation to lower the threshold for a quorum at shareholder meetings. The new law allowed state-owned NAK Naftogaz Ukrainy, the majority owner of pipeline operator VAT Ukrnafta, to replace Kolomoisky’s management team last week and claim about 1.8 billion hryvnia ($77.5 million) in dividends for previous years. His security guards took control of the headquarter’s of the country’s oil pipeline operator last week, sparking a standoff with the government.

How Mercenaries Are Changing Warfare 
Defense One  |  25 March 2015
> The use of mercenaries in warfare has a very long history—much longer, in fact, than the almost-exclusive deployment of national militaries to wage wars. Before the Peace of Westphalia in 1648 ended Europe’s Thirty Years’ War and marked the rise of the modern state system, medieval powers from kings to popes routinely hired private fighters to do battle for them. As state governments sought a monopoly on the use of force within their territories in the 17th century, however, they moved to stamp out violence by non-state actors, including mercenaries, driving the industry underground.

The Return of the Mercenary 
The Atlantic  |  25 March 2015
> The use of mercenaries in warfare has a very long history—much longer, in fact, than the almost-exclusive deployment of national militaries to wage wars. Before the Peace of Westphalia in 1648 ended Europe's Thirty Years' War and marked the rise of the modern state system, medieval powers from kings to popes routinely hired private fighters to do battle for them. As state governments sought a monopoly on the use of force within their territories in the 17th century, however, they moved to stamp out violence by non-state actors, including mercenaries, driving the industry underground.

Tanzania: Maritime Security Hinges Upon Joint Efforts 
allAfrica  |  25 March 2015
> FIGHTING against maritime piracy in the Indian Ocean is a tasking issue, which needs global cooperation among countries. This war is not the undertaking of a single country, but a task of the whole civilised world.

G4S responds to allegations it has been involved in numerous human rights scandals 
Business & Human Rights Centre  |  25 March 2015
> We note that the recent Russia Today article “G4S posts £148mn profit despite 'countless' human rights scandals” includes a number of significant errors regarding G4S' approach to sustainability and human rights and we were disappointed that Russia Today did not approach G4S to clarify these issues.

The Return of the Mercenary 
The Atlantic  |  25 March 2015
> The use of mercenaries in warfare has a very long history—much longer, in fact, than the almost-exclusive deployment of national militaries to wage wars. Before the Peace of Westphalia in 1648 ended Europe's Thirty Years' War and marked the rise of the modern state system, medieval powers from kings to popes routinely hired private fighters to do battle for them. As state governments sought a monopoly on the use of force within their territories in the 17th century, however, they moved to stamp out violence by non-state actors, including mercenaries, driving the industry underground.

Mercenaries in Africa: Leash the dogs of war 
The Economist  |  21 March 2015
> DURING the 1980s Leon Lotz fought for the “Koevoet” (“crowbar” in Afrikaans), a South African apartheid-era paramilitary unit charged with rooting out nationalist guerrillas in what is now Namibia—acting as “the crowbar which prises terrorists out of the bushveld like nails from rotten wood,” in the words of South Africa’s then minister of law and order, Louis le Grange. Such skills should today serve handily on the front line of Nigeria’s campaign against Boko Haram, whose fighters hide in the difficult bushland of the country’s remote north-east. Mr Lotz died there this month, reportedly killed by “friendly fire” from a Nigerian tank, along with an unnamed Namibian man, said to be his Ovambo driver.

Kyrgyz Mercenary Details Russian Military Role In Ukraine 
Radio Free Europe  |  20 March 2015
> In August 2014, Manas Mambetov, a senior lieutenant in the Kyrgyz Army reserves, arrived in eastern Ukraine on a moral quest to fight "fascists." A week ago, he returned home, accompanying the sealed coffins of two fellow Kyrgyz soldiers and disillusioned by his experience.

South Africa Plans to Renegotiate WTO Pact Over Private Security 
Bloomberg Business  |  20 March 2015
> South Africa plans to renegotiate the terms of its accession to an international trade pact adopted two decades ago so it can limit foreign ownership of private security companies. The government will withdraw from the World Trade Organization’s General Agreement on Trade in Services while it negotiates the planned curbs and any “necessary compensatory adjustment” with other signatories to the accord, Police Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko said in a speech in Johannesburg on Thursday.

NKyrgyz Mercenary Details Alleged Russian Military Role In Ukraine 
Radio Free Europe  |  20 March 2015
> In August 2014, Manas Mambetov, a senior lieutenant in the Kyrgyz Army reserves, arrived in eastern Ukraine on a moral quest to fight "fascists." A week ago, he returned home, accompanying the sealed coffins of two fellow Kyrgyz soldiers and disillusioned by his experience. Mambetov, who asked that his real name not be used, says he fought with regular Russian military personnel around Luhansk.

AT-RISK International Announces New Office in Brazil 
pharmiweb.com  |  19 March 2015
> AT-RISK International LLC leader in executive security consulting investigations and security training services announced today the opening of a new office in Rio de Janeiro Brazil. Jose Boanova and Ricardo Ferreira both Brazil natives will join AT-RISK with over 40 years of combined experience and lead the company’s efforts in Latin America to provide seamless consulting executive protection training and investigative services in the region.

Nigeria: Defeating Boko Haram With Mercenaries 
allAfrica/Vanguard  |  19 March 2015
> Let me first start, that like all Nigerian patriots, I feel happy that in a few weeks, the Nigerian Army and allies from Chad and Niger, inflicted backbreaking blows on the Boko Haram insurgency. As a result, many communities hitherto occupied by the terror organization have been liberated, including the complete liberation of Adamawa and Yobe states.

Liberia: At Supreme Court of Liberia - Grand Gedians Gear Up for Appeal Hearing Tomorrow 
allAfrica  |  18 March 2015
> Grand Gedians in and out of Liberia have been asked to turn out in their numbers at the Supreme Court of Liberia tomorrow, Thursday, March 19at about 8 O'clock AM to witness an case hearing in the Mercenary Case.

Nigeria calls in more mercenaries 
news24  |  17 March 2015
> Foreign private security personnel from South Africa, Russia and South Korea are on the ground in northeast Nigeria to train Nigerian troops and are not engaged in frontline combat against Boko Haram, the government said on Tuesday.

Military Contractor Whistleblower: Hands Up – CAN’T Shoot 
The National Law Review  |  17 March 2015
> American’s are at risk all over the world. Our military, still the best in the world, can’t be everywhere, all the time. In recent years, the government has increased its reliance on private security contractors. Unfortunately, the results are not always great. Probably the most striking examples of failed private military or security operations involve the defense of the Benghazi consulate in Libya and the killing of 17 Iraqis by Blackwater Security Consulting employees in 2007.

Disciplining private security companies 
The Express Tribune  |  17 March 2015
> Private security companies (PSC) in Pakistan play a significant second line role in protecting semi-state and non-state clients engaged in commercial business operations, construction efforts, diplomacy and related facets. In an unstable security environment, the efficacy and effectiveness of this force can be counted for to accrue desired dividends if their professional outlook is infused with various important value-added disciplines.

U.S. Envoy Attack Boosts Demand for Police Protection 
Seatrade  |  17 March 2015
> Private security companies are booming. "There's been more than a 50 percent increase in demand for security services since the attack on Lippert. We have difficulty handling the requests," a staffer with a private security firm said. "We're shorthanded as many people are asking for a detail of six or seven bodyguards for an event that needs only one or two."

Piracy and the armed guard question 
Seatrade  |  16 March 2015
> One of the more controversial growth sectors in shipping has been the private security business, in particular, the use of armed guards.

South African apartheid-era veterans find work fighting in Nigeria 
The Japan Times  |  14 March 2015
> South Africa was one of the first countries in the world to ban mercenaries but remains a major supplier of military instructors, some of them from the time of the brutal apartheid regime.

Under Military Pressure, 2 Extremist Groups Announce Pact 
ABC News  |  13 March 2015
> The quick acceptance by the so-called Islamic State of Boko Haram's pledge of fealty is a publicity boost, and comes at a time when both are suffering combat losses. Boko Haram militants in Nigeria and the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria, 2,000 miles (3,200 kilometers) away, might declare joint operations, possibly using an IS affiliate in chaotic Libya as a bridge to move arms and fighters. But whether they can effectively do that is very much in question.

Nigeria Drafts Foreign Mercenaries To Take On Boko Haram 
The Huffington Post  |  12 March 2015
> Nigeria has brought in hundreds of mercenaries from South Africa and the former Soviet Union to give its offensive against Boko Haram a shot in the arm before a March 28 election, according to regional security, defense and diplomatic sources.

Fighting Boko Haram: South African mercenary killed in friendly fire 
Daily Maverick  |  11 March 2015
> The first South African has been killed in north-eastern Nigeria, where he was participating in the fight against Boko Haram. Leon Lotz, an apartheid-era Koevoet operative, was reportedly killed in a friendly fire incident when a Nigerian tank destroyed the wrong target.

Maritime Security in Africa: Potential for the Private Sector? 
Hellenic Shipping News  |  11 March 2015
> Maritime matters have long been neglected in most African countries. While almost all coastal states on the continent claim an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) that stretches out to 200 nautical miles (370 kilometres) from the coastline, little effort has been made to realise the ocean’s economic potential. In recent years, however, the picture has started to change.

A Colombian Merc Firm Was the Pentagon’s Shadiest Afghanistan Contractor 
Medium  |  9 March 2015
> To save money and free up military choppers for combat operations, the U.S. military has paid contractors billions of dollars since 2008 to ferry soldiers and supplies around Afghanistan. But the Pentagon’s inspector general later discovered some exceedingly shady—and dangerous—behavior on the part of the contractors, according to a 2014 report that War Is Boring obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.

US Looking for Contractors to Help in Iraq 
DefenseWeb  |  9 March 2015
> The Department of Defense only has about 250 civilian contractors in Iraq supporting the 2,700 US troops deployed there; but a handful of new solicitations and potential contracts may soon add to that number, according to items posted to a federal contracting Web site. For the past two decades, the resource-heavy American way of war has dictated that where US troops go, civilian contractors follow.

Gun-Toting Fishermen Policing Town Show Holes in Mexico Security 
Bloomberg Business  |  9 March 2015
> Visitors who drive down the winding dirt road to the Mexican village of Nuevo Balsas are met by fishermen, farmers and teenage boys brandishing rifles. Most of the time, they’re the only law enforcement to be seen, according to locals. A deputy commander of the militia, who identified himself as David out of concern for his security, said they were forced to take up arms to defend their families from robberies and rape by drug cartels.

Controversy over floating armories 
The Nation  |  8 March 2015
> Floating armory discovered in the Galle Harbor made headlines since several allegations were made regarding its legality. However, Leader of the House, Lakshman Kiriella cleared the air stating that setting up of the companies, Rakna Lanka and Avant Garde Maritime Services and also that the recruitment of personnel and the payment of taxes and other dues had been done properly and therefore there is no issue as to the legality of the whole operation.

Report on private military and security companies 24th Meeting 22nd Regular Session Human Rights Council 
UN WEB TV  |  8 March 2015
> (Video) Report of the open-ended intergovernmental working group to consider the possibility of elaborating an international regulatory framework on the regulation, monitoring and oversight of the activities of private military and security companies.

Nigeria: Stemming Illegalities in Nigerian Waters 
All Africa  |  6 March 2015
> One of the ways to determine the commitment of any nation in the maintenance of law and order is the security of her territorial waters. As a member of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), Nigeria has the responsibility to ensure that insecurity is totally eliminated or minimised in her territorial waters.

A Look at US Diplomatic Security Around the World 
ABC News  |  5 March 2015
> Thursday's knife attack on America's ambassador in Seoul was the first major case of violence involving a U.S. ambassador since the deadly siege in Benghazi, Libya, more than two years ago. That's where similarities end. Whereas Libya remains engulfed in post-revolution chaos, torn between rival militias and terrorist organizations, South Korea is a U.S. ally and has a low crime rate. The U.S. security posture in each place is thus different.

Private Police: Mercenaries for the American Police State 
The Blaze  |  5 March 2015
> It’s one thing to know and exercise your rights when a police officer pulls you over, but what rights do you have when a private cop—entrusted with all of the powers of a government cop but not held to the same legal standards—pulls you over and subjects you to a stop-and-frisk or, worse, causes you to “disappear” into a Gitmo-esque detention center not unlike the one employed by Chicago police at Homan Square?

Panama Accredits Maritime Security Firm 
MarineLink  |  5 March 2015
> The Panama Maritime Authority has accredited ESC Global Security personnel to offer protection aboard Panamanian-registered vessels, in what is thought to mark the first Private Maritime Security Companies (PMSC) licence issued under the new Panama Administration.

Supplies of American arms to Ukraine is a matter of time 
Vestnik Kavkaza  |  4 March 2015
> According to the deputy chairman of the State Duma Committee for Security and Anti-Corruption, Oleg Denisenko, “the Americans are obliged to supply weapons to Kiev to support the regime of Poroshenko, to give him confidence for further action, and in order for the civil war on the territory of Donbas not to be extinguished.” Regarding the private military companies, it seems to Denisenko that it has a real basis: “Private military companies, according to the UN resolutions, have a right to accompany any goods into the territory of the country with which they have a contract. It will be medicines, food or weapons, for them it does not matter. They also have the right to train, educate and support in using the cargo. That is, weapons or ammunition. In my opinion, weapons will be delivered there. The question is: how will it be done, and in what period of time?”

Florida Veteran Building Mercenary Force to Fight ISIS 
Newsmax  |  3 March 2015
> A Florida veteran has decided to take matters into his own hands and is recruiting other military veterans to fight the Islamic State (ISIS). According to a WTLV report, Sean Rowe — who served in the military for eight years and now lives in Jacksonville, Fla. — is recruiting via a website he launched, Veterans Against ISIS.

Security involved in 2012 Benghazi attack say U.S. must learn from mistakes 
Fox4 News Kansas City  |  3 March 2015
> Two private security contractors who helped rescue Americans during the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya say our government needs to learn from its mistakes to prevent repeating them again.

The Perils of Privatization 
The American Prospect  |  3 March 2015
> One November morning in 2004, three U.S. military men boarded a small turboprop plane at Bagram Air Base near Kabul for a two-and-a-half-hour flight to Farah, a base in western Afghanistan. They were Lieutenant Colonel Michael McMahon, Chief Warrant Officer Travis Grogan, and Specialist Harley Miller, the only passengers on Flight 61. The flight was operated by an affiliate of Blackwater, the private military company under U.S. contract for air transport of mail, supplies, and troops.

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