The Guardian reports:
A Hong Kong-listed security firm founded by Erik Prince has signed a preliminary deal with authorities in China to build a training centre in Xinjiang, where Uighur Muslims have experienced a huge security crackdown.
Frontier Services Group, which specialises in providing security and logistics for businesses operating in risky regions, said it had signed a deal to run a training base in the city of Kashgar, according to a statement posted on its Chinese website. The firm was founded by Erik Prince, a former US Navy SEAL and the brother of the US education secretary, Betsy DeVos.
Prince was also the founder of the US military contractor Blackwater, whose mercenaries had a prominent and controversial role during Washington’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – including the 2007 killing of 14 unarmed Iraqi civilians by Blackwater employees.
A Prince spokesman told Reuters on Friday that Prince had “no knowledge or involvement whatsoever with this preliminary memorandum regarding the company’s activity in Xinjiang.”
“Any potential investment of this nature would require the knowledge and input of each FSG Board member and a formal Board resolution,” the spokesman said in an email. Prince is deputy chairman, a minority shareholder and a board member of FSG, a security, logistics and insurance provider.
A Hong Kong-based spokesman for FSG told Reuters on Friday that the statement was “published in error by a staff member in Beijing” and had been taken off FSG’s website.
Co-founded of notorious former U.S. military services contractor Blackwater, now operating in a new capacity, will build a “training center” in Xinjiang, epicenter of China’s detention of one million Uighur Muslims for forced renunciation of Islam. https://t.co/KdNxmxpS6t pic.twitter.com/eCurjKIYsY
— Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth) January 31, 2019
Security firm set up Erik Prince, founder of the former mercenary contractor Blackwater, signs deal with China to build training centre in Xinjiang, where Uighur Muslims have experienced a huge security crackdownhttps://t.co/Ko2GiJdu9Y pic.twitter.com/owzFS2vZsr
— AFP news agency (@AFP) February 1, 2019