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SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, Mar. 21) - A subsidiary of British company that has provided security for soccer star David Beckham is the latest agency targeting Fijians for work in the Middle East.

Sabre International Fiji, a subsidiary of England-based Control Solutions, was registered to operate in Fiji last week and intends to recruit 50 former soldiers within the next four weeks to work in Iraq.

Control Solutions is owned by former Special Air Services soldiers and has about 10 contracts with U.S. companies in Iraq.

Company director Mike Halligan said Sabre already has 250 Fijians working for them in Iraq.

"But we need more people when we have to rotate these people," he said yesterday.

The company is offering US$2,000 to US$3,000 a month (FJ$3,260 to FJ$4,890) for six months to locals.

"We might need up to a 1,000 people if we secure more contracts in the near future," Halligan said.

Fijians recruited by the company will protect soldiers training to counter terrorism in Iraq. Halligan said they would not recruit soldiers who were within the army but those that had left the army.

He added that they had chosen to recruit Fijians because they were reputed to be among the best soldiers in the world, highly responsible, integrate well with people, speak perfect English and are "big, imposing figures."

Halligan said the company intends to set up a training institution locally to train their recruits on special skills.

Once the locals undergo training, they could become personal bodyguards and earn 300 pounds or around $900 (US$550) a day.

The company will also recruit eight people to undergo training in London to become dog-handling experts.

Sabre Fiji director Saula Tuikoro said former soldiers interested to work in Iraq are to contact them at their Suva Street office in Toorak.

Control Solutions currently employs 2,500 people in UK and another 650 in Iraq.

Halligan said the recruits have an insurance cover where if they die, their family members would receive two thirds of their monthly pay for life.

March 22, 2005

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