In this Sunday, May 10, 2015 photo, Sunni tribal fighters secure central Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province, 115 kilometers (70 miles) west of Baghdad, Iraq. (AP Photo)
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Many tribal leaders in Anbar province, of which Ramadi is the capital, said they would continue to fight ISIS, not for the sake of a government they say never offered the adequate support, but because they have no other choice.The force spread to several parts of Iraq to reach a strength of around 50,000 men initially paid directly by the United States.Responsibility was transferred to the government in 2008 and the outfit was eventually disbanded after relations soured over former Prime Minister Nouri a-Maliki's failure to deliver on promises to integrate the Sahwat in the army.His successor Haider al-Abadi has only just begun to rekindle the Sahwat under a different and more controlled format, by incorporating them into the Shiite-dominated Popular Mobilization forces, which serve as an umbrella for volunteers and militias.The Shiite-dominated government is blaming Anbaris for not mobilizing en masse against ISIS.Michael Knights of the Washington Institute was more hopeful that Baghdad and the Sunni tribes could work together effectively.
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