The governor of Sunni-majority Anbar province says he has received a pledge of U.S. support, including air power, to help groups in the province fight ISIS, which has control of large parts of the province and is threatening key assets. Ahmed Khalaf al-Dulaimi:
Our first goal is the air support. Their technology capability will offer a lot of intelligence information and monitoring of the desert and many things which we are in need of. No date was decided but it will be very soon and there will be a presence for the Americans in the western area.
Dulaimi is concerned by the militants’ determination to seize control of Anbar’s Haditha dam.
The situation in Haditha, where the dam is, is controlled by security forces and tribes. But the problem is how long can they endure the pressure?
He says the embassy has committed to a presence in Anbar:
I held several meetings since one month ago with the American Embassy and the commander of the central troops all in this regard, and very soon there will be a joint coordination center and operations in Anbar. They gave a promise.
State Department spokesperson to reporters:
We’re having conversations about what it (any security assistance) might look like in the future, but nothing concrete beyond that.