UN panel calls for more oversight of contractors

A U.N. panel has called for greater oversight and regulation of private military contractors working in war zones such as Afghanistan.

The U.N. working group on the use of mercenaries says there is a lack of effective vetting procedures with some companies employing individuals who may have been involved in human rights abuses.

The panel wants the U.S. government and others who use such groups to establish “a strong system of regulation and oversight of private military and security companies.”

Panel chairman Alexander Nikitin said in a statement Tuesday that voluntary codes of conduct for private contractors are not sufficient.

Nikitin says efforts at self-regulation in the past ten years have failed to establish effective accountability.

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