Private security contractor Blackwater Worldwide is continuing its operations in Iraq under new rules for contractors.
The new status of forces agreement in Iraq began Thursday. The State Department has warned Blackwater and other contractors that they should no longer expect immunity from Iraq's courts. But the new pact only addresses Department of Defense contractors and does not explicitly discuss those working for the State Department, so industry observers say it's unclear how the new rules will impact Blackwater.
Blackwater declined to discuss the new agreement, and the State Department has simply described it as an important milestone for Iraqi sovereignty.
Blackwater has about 1,000 guards working in Iraq and is based in Moyock.