Announced today by the Iraqi Interior Ministry Spokesman Major General Abdul-Karim Khalaf, the Iraqi government has banned Blackwater from the country due to "improper conduct and excessive use of force". The most infamous Blackwater killing came in November of 2007 when 17 civilians were shot in a busy Baghdad intersection by rampaging American contractors.
Blackwater provides security for U.S. and foreign diplomats visiting Iraq. During President Obama's summer 2008 tour of Iraq, Blackwater protected him throughout the visit. Since the 2007 slayings, the government has sent special military overseers on Blackwater missions, however their multi-billion dollar contracts with the U.S. government has remained intact.
Blackwater is a private military contractor company based in Moyock, North Carolina. Its ties with Halliburton, KBR and former Vice President Dick Cheney are well known.
Blackwater could be expected to leave Iraq as early as this spring.