In the Nicaraguan capital Managua President Anastasio Somoza has called in his Air Force to dislodge Sandinist guerrillas, who are fighting to overthrow him.
GV AND LV: Aircraft strafing positions near President Somoza's headquarters in Managua with newsmen watching from the roof of Intercontinental Hotel. (5 shots)
TV: National Guard reinforcement arriving at Somoza's banker.
GV: smoke pours over Managua.
LV: convoy of vehicles leaving United States Embassy building.
LV AND CU: line of cars searched by soldiers (2 shots)
LV AND CU: shops being looted with soldiers looking on.
SV: looters carrying away boxes and parcels (2 shots)
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Background: In the Nicaraguan capital Managua President Anastasio Somoza has called in his Air Force to dislodge Sandinist guerrillas, who are fighting to overthrow him. By Friday (15 June), the guerrillas controlled half of the city, after days of street fighting which left hundreds dead and areas of the city in ruins.
SYNOPSIS: President Somoza ordered the air attacks as the guerrillas dug in throughout the poorer areas. Casualties i the slum quarters were particularly high as the jets strafed positions held by the left-wing guerrillas. The Sandinist National Liberation Front described its offensive in Managua as "the final battle". And newsmen watched from a hotel roof as the fighting continued.
President Somoza has directed operations from his fortified bunker in the centre of the city. From there, National Guard reinforcements went out into the streets, where buildings hit by bombs burned.
The United States began evacuating families from its Embassy on Tuesday (12 June). An armed convoy took the Americans to President Somoza's private airport near Leon.
Government troops, however, sealed off most roads around Managua in an attempt to block rebel reinforcements. The guerrillas soon captured a large area near the main airport.
Managua is a city apparently without law. As the threat of famine grew in the city, widespread looting broke out. National Guardsmen did little to stop it and were accused of looting themselves. About seventeen thousand refugees left the ruined shanty town - many of them stole food supplies from stores as they fled.