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British Embassy Private Security Guards attacked by suicide bombers in Iraq

Added: (Tue Mar 25 2008)

Pressbox (Press Release) - Peter Deane and Robert Harrington were two private security guards employed by CRG, a global security firm, to provide close protection for British Embassy staff in Baghdad, whenever leaving their embassy compound.

CRG hold the lucrative contract to provide security to the British Embassy in Iraq.

On 17th November 2004, Deane, who was a Team Leader for CRG, and Harrington, who was the driver of his vehicle, set out along the Baghdad International Airport road.

Shortly after they left the heavily protected international "Green Zone", a white saloon drew up alongside them and detonated an improvised explosive device (IED). A fireball blew through their car as the bonnet of the vehicle was blown up blocking the view of the driver. The occupants of the vehicle were peppered with shrapnel wounds.

"We thought this was the end," said Deane. Incredibly, Harrington was able to drive the vehicle in a straight line before crashing into a signpost on the side of the road.

Deane sustained factures to the right ankle, fractured ribs, and a collapsed lung in the incident. Harrington sustained lacerations to his face, cuts and bruises and a permanent 5cm scar above the right eyebrow. Both men were understandably affected psychologically by the accident.

Deane and Harrington later found out that CRG had advance intelligence of an imminent attack on the same road. Members of the local insurgency had been passing out flyers the day before the attack warning the local population to stay off that road. However, this information was not passed onto members of Deane and Harrington’s team despite their superiors being in receipt of the intelligence.

Shortly after the suicide bomb attack, the road was placed "out of bounds" and British Embassy employees were transferred to the airport by way of helicopter.

CRG are disputing legal liability for the Deane and Harrington's injuries.

Deane speaking about the claim said, "I regret having to make the claim since I really believed in the Iraq mission, but we were let down by CRG bosses when they failed to warn of us of the attack. I also received most of my serious injuries when the vehicle crashed. I had no seatbelt fitted in my vehicle, and despite having brought this to CRG management's attention nothing was done about it. There was very much an attitude of 'just get on with the job, don’t complain about anything".

Submitted by:Adrian Clark
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