The Iraqi government announced that it has reached new leads related to the murder of former government aide and security expert Hisham al-Hashemi.
In a statement Sunday, government spokesman Ahmed Malla Talal said the details will not be disclosed to preserve the confidentiality of the investigations.
Hashemi was killed by unknown gunmen in front of his Baghdad home in July, sparking outrage in the country. He has done extensive work on armed factions in Iraq, the most recent of which tackled the deployment and areas of influence of pro-Iran groups.
A security source told Asharq Al-Awsat that the government announcement was the product of strenuous investigations. The probe had closely followed all groups and people who post news and comments that attack Hashemi and accuse him of treason, as well as other who had rejoiced at his killing.
They were able through this information to draw up an almost complete image of the circumstances that led to his murder, added the source on condition of anonymity.
The government announcement was made shortly after unknown parties posted encrypted text messages of a conversation Hashemi had about a media cell that is affiliated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps in Baghdad.
The texts were exchanged between Hashemi and an unknown individual who had spoken at length about the cell, revealing some of the names of figures affiliated with it. Among them are people who are well-known in Iraqi media circles.
The source, meanwhile, said the government chose to make the announcement on progress in the probe when Iraq was marking the one-year anniversary of the mass anti-government protests.
He said the government was seeking to gain favor with the demonstrators seeing as it has been unable to make any progress in uncovering the parties behind the attacks against the protesters that had claimed hundreds of lives.