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Marines detain American contractors in Iraq for firing on troops

[JURIST] US Marines detained 19 employees of North Carolina-based Zapata Engineering [company website] for 3 days, after reportedly witnessing the contractors open fire on troops and civilians in Iraq, the US military announced Tuesday. The employees, including 16 Americans, most of whom were security personnel, and 3 Iraqi translators, have resigned their positions and have returned to the United States. Several have accused the Marines of "roughing them up," hazing them, and treating them like insurgents, even though they say the incident was one of mistaken identity and "friendly fire". The military has denied any mistreatment. Zapata Engineering is employed by the Army Corps of Engineers to dispose of explosives [Charlotte Carolina News 14 report] and the company operates from southern Fallujah. The Los Angeles Times [article] and CorpWatch.org [article] have more.

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