The Thai army on Monday (15 October) moved more than twenty-eight thousand Kampuchean refugees away from the border with Kampuchea.
The Thai army on Monday (15 October) moved more than twenty-eight thousand Kampuchean refugees away from the border with Kampuchea. The move was prompted by a mortar attack on the temporary refugee camp. Tens of thousands of other Kampucheans massed along the border were expected to cross into Thailand as the fighting intensifies between Vietnamese troops and the remaining forces of ousted leader Pol Pot.
SYNOPSIS: The fighting these refugees have tried to leave behind is catching up with them. Although the main Vietnamese offensive has not yet started, the fighting along this front in the past week has been enough to bring tens of thousands of Kampucheans to the unmarked border ... and to what they hope is safety in Thailand.
These refugees are expected to be joined by at least a hundred thousand more, as the Vietnamese offensive accelerates. And if, as is feared, it spills over into Thailand, they will have to move on again.
On Saturday eight rifle grenade shells exploded in the middle of a camp, killing five people and wounding twelve others.
From the angle of the impact, Thai troops were convinced the shells were fired from inside Thai territory, meaning, at least some elements of the attacking force have crossed the border. Thai aircraft are patrolling the border area and Defence Minister Prem Tinsulanond went to Aranyaprathet on Monday (15 October) on a special inspection tour.
These refugees are being fed enough to stay alive, and now their countrymen back in Kampuchea can also hope for at least some relief from the massive starvation An international relief effort to send twenty-five million pounds of food and supplies into the famine stricken country has begun. It followed reports that hundreds of thousands of Kampucheans are starving to death. The programme calls for help for hospitals and tons of seed for the land ravaged by war.