The company set to provide security for the 2012 Olympics has been operating in illegal settlements in the West Bank and at Israeli prisons.
G4S, the world’s largest security company operating in 125 different countries, will provide 10,000 agents for the London games. But in countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Israel, they have a more controversial history.
In the Occupied Palestinian Territories, armed G4S agents provide security for settlers and operate checkpoints. They have also worked in Iraq and Afghanistan as private security agents. In both places, similar companies have been accused of murdering civilians and profiting from the chaos of civil war.
The British government has given G4S hundreds of millions of dollars to keep the Olympics running smoothly but have come under fire for employing a company with such a murky track record.
British Prime Minister, David Cameron, will be challenged in Parliament next week over whether he has ensured that G4S will no longer provide services for illegal settlements in the West Bank.
Some politicians have questioned if the presence of operatives in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, including in prisons that hold children, violates the terms of the Olympic charter.
Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has announced that he is determined to continue illegal settlement expansion. He declared plans to build an additional 850 Israel houses in the West Bank just this week.
G4S said: "Our policy is always to comply with national law in any jurisdiction in which we operate. We take our ethical responsibilities very seriously and operate to high standards around the world."
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