Iraqi security forces and tribal fighters gather in central Ramadi before attacking ISIS extremists in Ramadi, 70 miles (115 kilometers) west of Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday, April 15, 2015. (AP Photo)
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Clashes between Iraqi forces and ISIS militants pressing their offensive for Ramadi, the capital of western Anbar province, has forced more than 2,000 families to flee from their homes in the area, an Iraqi official said Thursday.The Sunni militants' push on Ramadi, launched Wednesday when ISIS captured three villages on the city's eastern outskirts, has become the most significant threat so far to the provincial capital of Anbar.On Thursday, sporadic clashes were still underway, according to security officials in Ramadi.Ramadi and the city of Fallujah to the east, roughly half-way on the road to Baghdad, were major Al-Qaeda strongholds during the eight-year U.S.-led invasion, and fighting in Anbar was especially costly for Americans troops.A senior U.S. military official told The Associated Press that there were no plans to evacuate U.S. troops from the Ain al-Asad air base, about 110 kilometers (68 miles) west of Ramadi -- and stressed that the current fighting around Ramadi had no impact on the situation on the base or Americans there.
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