The Vietnamese Government has reported heavy attacks by Cambodian troops on its border provinces, leaving many civilians dead, houses ruined and crops destroyed.
The Vietnamese Government has reported heavy attacks by Cambodian troops on its border provinces, leaving many civilians dead, houses ruined and crops destroyed. On Thursday (23 March) latest reports from the battle area said more than a thousand Cambodian troops had crossed the border and killed more than 200 Vietnamese in Song Be Province, north of Ho Chi Minh city.
SYNOPSIS: In the Dong Tap Province, Vietnamese troops have moved in to patrol the area - along the Mekong River, just 50 kilometres (31 miles) from the border. Since the start of the year there have been more than a hundred invasions by Cambodian troops in this district and the Vietnamese Government says casualties have been high. They have requested peace talks with the Cambodian government on the border conflicts, but the requests have so far gone unanswered. Schools, houses and temples in the area have been destroyed.
This is where the Cambodians were. Reports claim during the attacks 88 Vietnamese were killed, including fifteen children, 118 people were injured and more than a hundred homes burned, along with 350 hectares of rice fields. Now Vietnamese troops have regained the district and military exercises are being carried out. However, the Cambodians are still reported to be on the Vietnamese side of the border and while these Vietnamese troops consolidate their position in this district, the fighting has been continuing close-by.
Offers of peace talks have been turned down by the Cambodian Government, which wants all Vietnamese troops withdrawn from its territory, before considering a peace call. Cambodia claims it has captured Vietnamese soldiers who were allegedly under orders to gain control of south-eastern Cambodia. Cambodia claims the prisoners were told Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam were brother nations which should be united in a federation of Indo-Chinese people. The prisoners are quoted as saying they were to fight to achieve this federation as Vietnam was now a powerful country in South East Asia. But while the arguments continue there has been no sign of any slackening of the border conflicts. And in this area Vietnamese soldiers are now ready for any future attacks from Cambodian troops.