Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi arrives for a meeting with Jordan's King Abdullah at the Royal Palace in Amman October 26, 2014. REUTERS/Muhammad Hamed
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When Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi took office, he was regarded as a moderate Shiite leader who could win over powerful Sunni tribal chiefs to the fight against ISIS.Abadi, for his part, seems mistrustful of tribal leaders, who are plagued by divisions and have been accused of misuse of state funds and military support in the past.A 62-year-old British-educated Shiite engineer, Abadi is a much more conciliatory figure than his predecessor Nouri al-Maliki, whose policies were seen by most Sunnis as discriminatory, leading to an uprising in Sunni areas that was exploited by ISIS fighters this year.Sunni tribal fighters that have dared to oppose ISIS are outmanned and say the U.S. military and Iraqi government are not sending enough support.Tribal leaders acknowledge that previous arms shipments went awry, but blame the government for mishandling them."We know the fact that most of the arms which were supplied to some tribal figures by Maliki in April ended up in the hands of [ISIS] fighters," Ga'oud said.Other tribal figures said the tribes themselves needed to do more to coordinate their activity to win government support.
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