P 070739Z FEB 08 FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5611 C O N F I D E N T I A L BAGHDAD 000357 SUBJECT: IMPLEMENTATION OF RECOMMENDATIONS ON PERSONAL PROTECTIVE

SERVICES: STATUS REPORT UPDATE #3 REF: A. B. C. D. E. 07 07 07 07 08 BAGHDAD BAGHDAD BAGHDAD BAGHDAD BAGHDAD 03668 03764 03767 04001 00248

Classified By: Patricia Butenis, Charge, for reasons: 1.4 (b) and (d) ------Summary ------¶1. (C) This cable is the third update of Embassy Baghdad's implementation of the relevant eighteen recommendations of the Secretary's Panel on Protective Services. The following recommendations have been implemented by Post (reftel D): A. (C) Kennedy Recommendation 12 - Joint Review

Board B. (C) Kennedy Recommendation 17 - Direct RSO Engagement with GOI Police and Security Officials; C. (C) Kennedy Recommendation 18 - RSO Response Team Facilitation to Embassy Claims Program. ¶2. (C) Embassy Baghdad has made significant progress on recommendations 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 14, and 16 as outlined in this cable. Recommendations 1, 2, 3, 6, 7 and 15 require Department action. ¶3. (C) This cable also provides an update on the Department of State-Department of Defense Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on private security companies, proposed Iraqi legislation concerning Coalition Provisional Authority Order 17, and Embassy and Blackwater condolence payments in connection with the September 16 incident. End Summary. --------------------------------------------------Recommendation 2 - DOD and DOS Discussions with GOI on New Regulatory Framework for USG Private Security Contractors --------------------------------------------------¶4. (C) STATUS: ONGOING. The legal status of DOD contractors, including private security contractors, will be part of the negotiations

between the USG and the GOI on a Status of Forces (SOFA) agreement expected to begin this month. The Department of State will seek to obtain similar agreement on immunities and related issues for DOS contractors separately. --------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 4 - Recommendation for Continued Contract Services of Blackwater --------------------------------------------¶5. (C) STATUS: ONGOING. FBI investigation of the September 16 incident has not concluded. However, the Blackwater contract expires in May 2008 and a decision on renewal may have to be made before the FBI investigation concludes. -------------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 5 - RSO to be provided with DS Agents Staffing to Accompany PPS Movements -------------------------------------------------¶6. (C) STATUS: NEAR COMPLETION. Assistant Regional Security Officers (ARSOs) and TDY DS Special Agents (SAs) are assigned to command each Chief of Mission (COM) Personal Security Detail (PSD) operating in the Baghdad area under the WPPS contract. Fifty-two Special Agent positions and positions related to the oversight of all DOS Private Security Contractors (PSCs) in Iraq have been requested (reftel E) to include RSO coverage of non-RSO Chief of Mission (COM) PSD movements and coverage outside Baghdad. In late March, the first group of

approximately 12 new Special Agents will arrive after completing training. This first group will be assigned to Regional Embassy Offices (REOs) and the Regional and Provincial Reconstruction Teams where DS has PSD responsibilities. In the short term, Post continues to maintain a staffing increase for this requirement through the use of DS TDY personnel. --------------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 8 - Revisions to the Embassy Rules For the Use of Force --------------------------------------------------¶7. (C) STATUS: COMPLETED. The Baghdad Mission Firearms Policy has been revised and issued. The Rules for the Use of Force have been modified to make the language consistent with the common principles outlined in the DOS-DOD MOA. ¶8. (C) To reduce the number of lethal force incidents, Post has procured 24 Dazzlers. A Dazzler is a non-lethal light-emitting weapon designed for use against perceived vehicle threats as part of the graduated force response. On February 20, instructors will initiate training to all PSD teams on its proper application. --------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 9 - Video Recording Equipment in Vehicles and Recording of Radio Communications ---------------------------------------------

¶9. (C) STATUS: ONGOING/NEAR IMPLEMENTATION: DS Security Engineering Officers (SEOs) are installing the approved Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) system into PSD vehicles in Baghdad. Each COM motorcade traveling into the Red Zone now has at least one vehicle with a camera system installed. A second installation team is arriving this week to continue the installation. The entire project is scheduled to continue through the spring with the short term goal of having at least two vehicles in every motorcade operating with cameras. Nearly 400 COM vehicles throughout Iraq will have cameras installed upon the completion of the project. Initial experience with the cameras has been very positive. ¶10. (C) IRM procured, built and tested a system that can simultaneously record 32 radio channels. The system is in the delivery stage. -------------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 10 - Vehicle Identification Numbering System -------------------------------------------------¶11. (C) STATUS: NO CHANGE. RSO has engaged MNF-I on this issue and reviewed the operational security (OPSEC) concerns with respect to readable vehicle number signage. It is the collective assessment of the Embassy and MNF-I that a vehicle numbering system is only viable if all USG PSDs adopt the same numbering scheme and non-USG PSDs also agree

to voluntarily adopt the same system. MNF-I is not inclined to support a numbering system solely for US Embassy Baghdad PSCs as it may offer enemy forces the ability to identify them as such and bring greater risk to COM movements. Post recommends that this recommendation be reconsidered in light of the extensive communications and deconfliction measures that have been put into effect by RSO, MNF-I, and MNC-I which are proving to be effective. -------------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 11 - Investigations and RSO Response Unit -------------------------------------------------¶12. (C) STATUS: ONGOING/NEAR COMPLETION. RSO has established a Force Investigation Unit (FIU) consisting of a dedicated FIU supervisor and ARSO. The FIU currently draws upon other RSO personnel as needed. The PSD Serious Incident Investigation Handbook is in the DS approval process. RSO has requested Special Agent and contract investigator resources to fully staff this unit to 14 persons. The FIU will be responsible for the investigation of all serious incidents involving DOS-affiliated PSCs to include Tier I and Tier II private security contractors. Position descriptions have been written and funding is being pursued. The first meeting of the Embassy and MNFI Joint Incident Review Board will be conducted on February 12.

--------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 13 - RSO AND MNF-I Procedures for Coordination, Liaison, and Operational De-confliction --------------------------------------------¶13. (C) STATUS: AWAITING RSO LNO TO THE Multinational Corps) Iraq (MNC-I)Joint Operations Center (JOC). RSO, MNF-I and MNC-I have developed commonly agreed operational procedures, liaison coordination and exchange of information, and a process for swift resolution of issues of mutual interest. RSO participates in the MNF-I Strategic Operations daily briefing and presents data on planned COM protective missions for the next 24 hours. An MNC-I liaison officer (LNO) was added to the RSO TOC and has been fully integrated into the RSO TOC's operations. The LNO provides enhanced visibility to MNC-I on PSD movements outside the IZ and serves as the focal point for coordination and situational awareness between RSO and battle space owners in Baghdad. An RSO LNO has been identified and will be assigned to the MNC-I Joint Operations Center to enhance coordination between the Embassy and MNC-I. -----------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 14 - PRC 152 Radios -----------------------------------------¶14. (C) The procurement of additional communication capabilities is underway, with the arrival of the Harris PRC 152 handheld radio system expected by the end of February. These radios give PSDs the ability to contact military units directly

in the field to de-conflict issues or request medical evacuation and quick reaction forces. --------------------------------------------------Kennedy Recommendation 16 - GOI-US Joint Commission Working Group on PSC Licensing and Transparency --------------------------------------------------¶15. (C) STATUS: ONGOING. The Embassy, represented by the RSO, and the Multinational Forces ) Iraq (MNF-I), represented by the Chief of the Contractor Policy and Oversight Division (CPOD), continue to hold regular joint working group meetings with the Chief, Private Security Regulatory Division, Ministry of Interior, and his staff to address topics of mutual concern. Four meetings have been held to date. -----------------------------------------------Completion of Negotiations on the DOS-DOD MOA on PSCs -----------------------------------------------¶16. (C) The Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on private security companies, negotiated by the Embassy and MNF-I, was signed by the Deputies for State and Defense on December 5, 2007. -----------------------------------Embassy Condolence Payments Continue ------------------------------------

¶17. (C) On November 26, 2007, the Deputy Chief of Mission, Acting RSO, and Acting Embassy Legal Adviser made condolence payments to one Iraqi who had been injured and to the widow and brother of an Iraqi who had been killed in the September 16 incident. All claimants accepted the payments. In addition, the Iraqi who suffered an injury informed the DCM that he had been punished for his absence at work when he was recovering from his injury. The DCM apologized and offered to write a letter to his employer explaining the cause of his absence, which was provided to the claimant at a later date. ¶18. (C) On December 27, 2007, the Deputy Chief of Mission, RSO, and Acting Embassy Legal Adviser made condolence payments to three Iraqis who had been injured and the widow of an Iraqi who had been killed in the incident. All claimants accepted the payments. The Embassy is continuing to work to obtain contact information for all of the potential claimants from the September 16 incident and plans to make additional payments in the future as it locates those claimants. To date, the Embassy has paid 132,500 dollars to claimants: 40,000 dollars to the families of 4 killed, 65,000 dollars to 13 injured, and 27,500 dollars to 11 claimants for vehicle damage. -----------------------------Blackwater Condolence Payments -----------------------------¶19. (C) On January 18, 2007, the DCM and RSO met

with Blackwater representatives and were briefed on Blackwater's intentions to make condolence payments to the victims of the September 16 Nisur Square incident and to obtain an operating license from the Ministry of Interior. In a change from Blackwater's previous position, the representatives said that Blackwater has hired a number of Iraqi attorneys, including one who has had significant experience dealing with MNFI on Iraqi claims cases, to work with local courts on payment issues and plans to follow procedures for payments as determined by local laws and regulations. Blackwater has set aside "a generous pot" of money for these payments and the Iraqi attorneys will be contacting survivors and relatives of the deceased. Representatives said that they intended to make payments to all claimants, including those with lawsuits pending in the United States, largely because they did not expect those lawsuits to be successful. They also said that they would take into account the specific requests and circumstances of the claimants where possible. ¶20. (C) Blackwater is also moving ahead with efforts to obtain an operating license from the Ministry of Interior (MOI), and said that through their lawyers' communications with the MOI they were told that Prime Minister Maliki would approve the licensing of Blackwater if condolence payments are made. They have received this same assurance from members of the Ministry of Interior responsible for licensing. ¶21. (C) The DCM told Blackwater that the Embassy believed it was morally correct for Blackwater to

make condolence payments. She also indicated that while the Embassy welcomes this action by Blackwater, it will not have any effect on the DOS/Embassy decision on whether to retain Blackwater, and that in regards to the MOI licensing issue, under no circumstances could the Embassy approve of or in any way be part of a bribery effort. The Blackwater representatives indicated that they understood and that the process would be straightforward and transparent. ¶22. (C) In follow-up communications with Blackwater, RSO provided a list of all known victims and their available contact information. As of January 31, Blackwater's Iraqi attorneys had been able to contact family members of 6 of the deceased victims, and 12 of the victims that had suffered injuries and/or property damage. They continue to reach out to the additional victims (about 20 more) and have enlisted the help of the Iraqi Police to locate the victims for which there is no contact information (Note: Blackwater has agreed to provide the Embassy with contact information for any victims they are able to locate but for which the Embassy did not have contact information or were not able to locate. The Embassy will make its own payments to any additional victims that it is able to locate in this manner. End Note.) Blackwater said that on February 1, 2008, their Iraqi attorneys would begin to meet with each of the victims to express their sympathy and to interview them to subsequently craft an individual condolence payment amount for each victim. On average, Blackwater said it expects they will pay at least twice as much as what the Embassy paid and substantially more for victims or families

that were more significantly impacted by the incident. As an example, he cited a family that lost their bread winner, a man who was already supporting the families of four of his brothers whom had been killed as a result of sectarian violence. ----------------CPA 17 Draft Law ---------------¶23. (C) There has been no change in the status of the draft law to repeal CPA Order 17. The Council of Ministers approved a draft law and voted to send it to the Council of Representatives, but to date the draft has not yet been transmitted to the CoR. Once submitted, the law could pass in as little as one to two weeks given existing procedures. There has not, however, been much discussion on this draft law in recent weeks. We have engaged the GOI in an effort to prevent the Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs from submitting the proposed legislation to the CoR. In meetings with and in letters to GOI officials, we have highlighted the steps that the Embassy has taken to implement the Kennedy Report recommendations, the Memorandum of Agreement between the Department of State and Department of Defense on USG PSDs that was recently signed, and the ongoing FBI investigation into the September 16 incident. BUTENIS (Edited and reading.) reformatted by Andres for ease of