Fighting has been continuing along the Thai-Cambodian border, with Thai troops backed by irregular volunteers trying to stave off Cambodian Khmer Rouge incursions along their ill-defined 400-mile (650 kilometre) common frontier.
CU INTERIOR: man on direct telephone link in Aranyaprathet, Thailand, with nearby Cambodian village, Poipet.
LV ZOOM IN FROM: Thailand side of border post TO Poipet on Cambodian side.
MVS, SVS AND CU: Thai troops preparing arms and equipment and on border patrol. (6 shots)
CU: Thai soldier looking through binoculars and GV ZOOM TO Cambodian road block at border. (2 shots)
GV: Thai border refugees in resettlement camp.
GVs, MVs AND SVs: Thai troops and villagers fighting off attack with mortars, and reinforcements patrolling area after gun-battle. (9 shots)
SCU: villagers gathered around injured volunteer.
TRANSCRIPT: REPORTER: "This telephone is a hot-line between the Thai border town of Aranyaprathet, and the Cambodian town of Poipet, three kilometres away, Each Tuesday morning for the past three months, Thailand has activated the hot-line simply by lifting the receiver. And although the telephone on the Cambodian side rings, it is never answered. Ironically, the hot-line was designed to overcome the sort of tension that now exists along the border. Following the initial incursions by Cambodian forces three months ago, Thailand began moving in re-enforcements. The military-backed government in Bangkok also threatened to retaliate unless the attacks ceased. So far this year, more than 120 Thai's have been killed in fighting along the border, Thai and Cambodian representatives held formal talks in the Laotian capital of Vientianne last month. However, with tension still high, the talks appear to have achieved little. 'Cambodia's isolation from the rest of the world has increased recently with official confirmation that it's also involved with border-fighting with fellow-communist state Vietnam.
"These are not refugees from Indo-china. They're Thais. Thousands have been forced to abandon their villages in the face of Khmer Rouge attacks. There's little immediate hope of them being resettled.
'Our stay in one border village was interrupted by a Khmer Rouge attack. Within a minute village volunteers were rushing to intercept the Cambodians while the Army called up re-enforcements. The constant probing along the frontier by the Khmer Rouge has stretched some Thai units to the limit, and much of the fighting is being carried out by the poorly-trained and poorly-armed volunteers. Thai troops, backed up by village defence volunteers, are attempting to force the Khmer Rouge back into Cambodia. Already, there have been casualties on both sides. Gary Neat, for ABC News, on the Thai Cambodian border."
REPORTER: GARY NEAT
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Fighting has been continuing along the Thai-Cambodian border, with Thai troops backed by irregular volunteers trying to stave off Cambodian Khmer Rouge incursions along their ill-defined 400-mile (650 kilometre) common frontier. The area has been the scene of continued clashes since Cambodia was taken over by the Vietnamese -- baked Khmer Rouge army two and a half years ago. Reports from Bangkok, capital of the military-backed Thai Kingdom, say Cambodia is trying to force a no-man's land in the border area to try and halt the flow of refugees from the communist nation. A report from the scene.