Transport 'planes made three flights into Vientiane last Saturday (31 May) to take out the personal belongings of American citizens evacuated from Laos.
GV PAN Car drives up to aircraft hanger
SV Americans talking to Laotian officials
MV PAN Americans' personal belonging being loaded onto 'plane
SV American and Laotian officials look on
GV & SV More belongings being loaded onto 'plane by forklift truck
SV Americans boards 'plane
MV ZOOM OUT TO GV Aircraft taxing for take-off
Initials BB/1645 EG/JB/BB/1700
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Background: Transport 'planes made three flights into Vientiane last Saturday (31 May) to take out the personal belongings of American citizens evacuated from Laos.
The flights are part of a crash programme by the U.S. Government to have all American personnel out of the country by 30 June. The deadline was set under an agreement signed last Tuesday (27 May) to end a week-long occupation of the U.S. Aid for International Development's (USAID) sprawling compound in the capital by left-wing demonstrators.
The number of Americans still in the country is now only about 150, compared to more than 800 a month ago. Only 28 USAID officials remain.
Police are believed to have refused to allow some large, pre-packed containers to be loaded onto Saturday's flights. Only smaller, open boxes were allowed to be shipped out.
Several issue must still be resolved before USAID withdraws completely from Laos. Included is the pay-off for more than 1,400 local staff and the handing-over of vast quantities of material and equipment to the coalition Laotian Government. The Government has also asked for a complete review of its 1951 aid agreement with the United States -- currently worth about GBP32 million dollars (14 million pounds sterling) a year. It is presumed the Laotians will demand further aid in unspecified cash grants.