House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) has announced that he will hold hearings into an incident involving the private contractor Blackwater USA. Blackwater guards provide security for the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, and were involved in a shootout that left at least nine Iraqi civilians dead.
The Iraqi government has announced that it has pulled Blackwater's license to operate in the country following the shooting, according to the Associated Press.
Blackwater personnel have been involved in multiple shooting incidents in Iraq since the U.S. invasion in 2003, resulting in the deaths of numerous Iraqis.
“The controversy over Blackwater is an unfortunate demonstration of the perils of excessive reliance on private security contractors," Waxman said in a statement released by his office. "The Oversight Committee will be holding hearings to understand what has happened and the extent of the damage to U.S. security interests.”