• Short Summary

    Following last week's orders for general mobilisation of all males from 18-35 years, the MPLA -- the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola -- has stepped up its schedules in training centres around the capital of Luanda.

  • Description

    Following last week's orders for general mobilisation of all males from 18-35 years, the MPLA -- the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola -- has stepped up its schedules in training centres around the capital of Luanda.

    Fears are growing that a major battle will take place among the three liberation groups fighting for power in the West African territory prior to its independence from Portugal on November 11.

    On Friday (31 October) one of the MPLA's recruiting centres put its first batch of men to the test in a field exercise using live ammunition. This film shows the new soldiers being put through their paces.

    More than one hundred men took part in the exercise. After successfully rushing the "enemy" position, they were formed into lines and marched back for the closing session of the day -- a lecture from the unit's political officer. He spoke of the history of Angola's exploitation at the hands of imperialist powers.

    The military wing of the MPLA has warned publicly that anti-aircraft batteries would be used to shoot down unidentified aircraft flying over Luanda. At present the MPLA controls the capital but there have been attempts by rival movement, the FNLA, the National Front for the Liberation of Angola, to infiltrate Luanda. Diplomats there argue that whoever controls Luanda on 11 November will be in the best position to accept the transfer of power.

    Much of the financing for the FNLA is believed by the Portuguese to come from some European Common Market countries and one military source has specifically named Britain, West Germany and France.

    The MPLA, meanwhile, is largely equipped by the Soviet Union and countries of the Warsaw Pact, according to the sources. But MPLA leaders say their support also is drawn from other sympathetic countries outside the Communist Bloc.

    The MPLA is estimated at a force of over 30,000 while FNLA is estimated at 25,000.

    Both these movements are known to be better armed than the third movement -- the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) which controls often sparsely populated areas in the south and central regions.

    Meanwhile, military activity in Angola has been escalating. On Saturday (1 November), MPLA said it had killed 150 enemy troops when the FNLA had tried to push south to the key town of Lucala. It also accused its two rivals of atrocities in the south.

    On Friday, the FNLA launched an offensive against the strategic Angolan port of Lobito occupied by the MPLA. On the previous day the MPLA acknowledged that it had lost another key port, Mocamedes, 439 kilometres (272 miles) to the south of Lobito.

    According to the Zaire AZAP Agency, the FNLA and UNITA now hold 11 provinces in Angola, the MPLA three and two others are shared among the three movements.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA179S6OVGY3JX2HWPVXCUXFMGS
    Media URN:
    VLVA179S6OVGY3JX2HWPVXCUXFMGS
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    02/11/1975
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:56:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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