Reports: 400 US mercenaries help Kiev in its military offensive in east Ukraine

by J P Maher on May 13, 2014

in J P Maher (team member), military, Ukraine

VOR has the story:

About 400 elite commandos from a notorious US private security firm, Greystone Limited, the latest renaming of the former private CIA army Blackwater/Academi, are involved in a punitive operation mounted by Ukraine’s junta government against federalization supporters in eastern Ukraine, the German Bild am Sonntag newspaper reported on Sunday.

According to the newspaper, Greystone/Academi mercenaries participated in attacks against federalization supporters near Slavyansk. So far, it’s unclear who hired them.

In April 29, Germany’s Federal Intelligence Service (BND) informed the Angela Merkel government about Academi commandos’ involvement in Kiev’s military operations in eastern Ukraine.

Academi, former Blackwater (renamed in 2009), gained notoriety for the killing of civilians in Iraq, arms smuggling and other crimes, TASS reports.

Media reports claiming that the Ukrainian leadership wants to recruit personnel from private foreign military companies “to maintain law and order” may suggest that the Kiev regime wants to suppress civil protest and discontent, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

“Anyway, one can state that in the absence of support from the Ukrainian population, the Maidan government has only one option if it wants to remain in power – to mobilize any support possible from foreign sponsors, including foreign mercenaries,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a commentary.

“Among the candidates for the role of gendarme is the company Greystone Limited, registered in Barbados, which is integrated with the Academi corporation,” it said.

“It is an analogue, or, probably, an affiliate body of the Blackwater private army, whose soldiers have been accused of committing severe and regular human rights abuses in troubled regions,” the ministry said.

“This practice, if it really is implemented, goes against Ukrainian laws that ban foreign citizens from working with private security companies,” it said.

“Such initiatives demonstrate that those who have conquered their place in power in Kiev by force cannot guarantee minimal order or even their own security,” the Foreign Ministry said.

“The question arises, what the price of this plan is and where the money will come from. To what extent will the burden of expenses for highly-paid foreign specialists be shifted to ordinary Ukrainians who, in connection with a painful tax increase, including taxes on gas as a precondition for securing loans from the International Monetary Fund, will have to tighten their belts even more?” it said.

Private military company will be in charge of suppressing protest movements in Eastern Ukraine, said a source in the country’s Security Service. According to him, the name of the company is Greystone Limited.

According to a source cited by ITAR-TASS, Ukrainian authorities believe that the Security Service is not able to suppress the protest mood and neutralize the leaders and activists of the pro-Russian movement in the eastern regions. In particular, the source said, the acting president Alexander Turchinov shares this opinion. “Therefore it was decided to attract foreign professionals, who will serve as political police and state security protection, ” said the representative of the Security Service.

He informed that the initiative to attract mercenaries belongs to oligarchs Igor Kolomoisky and Sergei Taruta, appointed governors of Dnepropetrovsk and Donetsk regions.

Not so long ago, during a meeting with Turchinov, a plan to stop the protest movements in the eastern regions was discussed. Kolomoysky noted: “Why should we reinvent the bycycle if there are real people who understand how to do such things and how much to pay for them,” the source is quoted as saying.

According to publicly available information Greystone Limited is a structural part of Blackwater, that was later renamed into Academi. According to military experts, the company is associated with the CIA and the US Defense Department. Its employees participated in the war in Afghanistan after the fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime in 2003, the company has appeared in Iraq and became involved in training the new Iraqi armed forces and police, as well as support of the occupation forces.

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