• Short Summary

    The Indo-China war, which spread to the Khmer Republic in March 1970, has laid waste half the nation's rice producing plants and almost destroyed hundreds of villages.

  • Description

    The Indo-China war, which spread to the Khmer Republic in March 1970, has laid waste half the nation's rice producing plants and almost destroyed hundreds of villages.

    But now -- even while the hope of peace in Khmer is still hope alone -- the residents are moving back into their battered homes.

    On Monday (12 March), inhabitants began moving back to Banam, a small town on Highway 15, 45 miles (69 kms) east of Phnom Penh even while the fighting continued a few miles away at Prey Veng.

    Many of the people who were forced to leave Banam when it was under siege stayed away. Only a few returned to sort through the ruins and begin rebuilding their homes. Khmer forces stayed on in the town while the inhabitants tried to find somewhere to live. Some of them made do with shanty dwellings. Most cooked among the rubble. Not one had a house to go to.

    SYNOPSIS: It's three years since the Indo-China war spread over the border into the Khmer Republic, and on Monday, Government troops watched as inhabitants of the small town of Banam began to return to their homes...somewhere in the rubble.

    The damage to the small town on Highway 15 was massive. Shope offices and public buildings were demolished. A decent place to live for the people who'd decided to return just wasn't to the found. The same problem face more than seven-hundred-thousand refugees throughout the Khmer Republic. The social disruption caused by the breakdown of village and family life has hit the economy hard. There's little money, and less hope of getting any.

    Most of these refugees who fled while Banam was under tack tried to make a living in the rice industry. But the fighting closed almost all of that, and most of them were forced to return to this.

    The critical food and water shortage is being temporarily staved off by the Government troops, who've been bringing in supplies.

    But like hundreds of other Khmer towns, it's a make-do life, and until the proposed Government rebuilding and aid programme begins, there's little chance of conditions for the people of Banam improving. At the moment, they're relying completely on United States aid.

    In ones and twos, and by all forms of transport, the refugees are going back, looking for what hardly exists -- somewhere to live.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA3KPE3LFQ3X0SS3B8JIFKHD1DM
    Media URN:
    VLVA3KPE3LFQ3X0SS3B8JIFKHD1DM
    Group:
    Reuters - Including Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    14/03/1973
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:38:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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