Iraq PM sacks Baghdad security chief over deadly blast

Iraq PM sacks Baghdad security chief over deadly blast
2 min read
08 July, 2016
Video: Haider al-Abadi dismisses a number of security officials including head of the Baghdad Operations Command just days after one of the deadliest ever bombings hit the capital city.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi issued orders to dismiss a number of security officials including the head of the Baghdad security command just days after one of the deadliest ever bombings hit the capital city.

Abadi gave "an order to relieve the Baghdad Operations commander of his position, and relieving security and intelligence officials in Baghdad of their positions," his office said in a statement on Friday.

The Prime Minister dismissed the head of the Baghdad Operations Command lieutenant general Abdulamir al-Shimmari but the statement did not name the other officials removed.

"In the coming days we expect to see more security officials dismissed in response to the popular anger over the government’s security policies," a source close to the government told The New Arab.

The move came after Iraqi Health Minister Adila Hamoud announced that the death toll from a suicide car bombing that hit a shopping centre in Baghdad on Sunday reached 292.

The bodies of 115 killed were handed over to families but the identity of 177 others remains unknown.

The attack, claimed by Islamic State [IS] group, was the deadliest ever bombing by the militants in the country.

Interior Minister Mohammed Ghabban tendered his resignation after the attack and authorities announced the execution of five convicted terrorists and the arrest of 40 suspected as Baghdad attempted to boost its image in the wake of the attacks.

In his resignation, Ghabban put the blame on Iraqi's flawed security system, accusing the government of doing little to prevent such attacks and stating that checkpoints were "absolutely useless."

IS militants have resorted to attacks on civilians in response to setbacks they have suffered in the battlefield as Iraqi forces recapture significant territories from the militant group.