Blackwater plans shift from security business

July 21, 2008 1:54:08 PM PDT
Contractor Blackwater Worldwide plans a shift away from the private security business that brought it unwelcome attention following a deadly shooting in Baghdad last year. Executives told The Associated Press Monday that the negative media coverage and intense government scrutiny has made the cost of doing business too high. They say the company has unfairly come to symbolize all Iraq contractors and thus is a flash point for those opposed to the war.

Blackwater contractors are under investigation for their involvement in a shooting in Baghdad in September that left 17 Iraqis dead.

Regardless of the outcome of that case, Blackwater executives say the company will survive with a focus on international training, aviation and construction.