Security experts in Baghdad told Al-Monitor that the bombings happened because IS is trying to influence the speed with which the military operations of the security forces and tribes are targeting IS in areas under its control, and because the political disputes have negatively affected the security situation.
In this context, Imad Alou, an expert on security affairs, told Al-Monitor, “Whenever a political crisis emerges, the security situation in the country is negatively affected.” He added, “IS has moved its sleeper cells as it has been facing major pressure on the battle fronts. The government ought to activate its intelligence efforts and find out where these sleeper cells are located in the provinces and cities. [The government] should spare no effort to put pressure on these cells and arrest them.”
For his part, Hisham al-Hashemi, a visiting professor at Al-Nahrain Center for Strategic Studies, told Al-Monitor, “Every time IS finds itself under pressure in cities under its control, it carries out cowardly acts of terrorism in other cities that are unstable on the security level — such as Baghdad.”
Hashemi, who published a book titled “IS’ world” about the hierarchical organization of IS, stressed “the need for the national security services to be in charge of the security dossier instead of Baghdad’s Operations Command.”
Security in the capital is managed by the Operations Command in Baghdad, which follows the orders of the Ministry of Defense that includes the intelligence services. However, many officials in Baghdad consider that the protection of the capital should fall under the Ministry of Interior’s responsibility.