The Khmer Republic and the United States signed a joint agreement on Saturday (29 September), which guarantees that Khmer will receive a further three million dollars of economic aid from America.
The Khmer Republic and the United States signed a joint agreement on Saturday (29 September), which guarantees that Khmer will receive a further three million dollars of economic aid from America. The money will be used to import essential commodities, including spare parts, industrial equipment, lorries and chemicals.
Meanwhile, the Khmer capital, Phnom Penh, continues to put up a convincing display of normality. From Wednesday to Friday most of the population took part in the celebrations during an important three-day Buddhist festival. They visited the temples to pay their respects to their dead ancestors, and to present the monks with household utensil and cooked rice.
School children were on holiday and all shops closed for the festival. But beyond the outskirts of the city, Government troops fought off Communist guerrilla attacks on their defences. Throughout the week there were clashes between Government and guerrilla troops south and north-east of the city.
SYNOPSIS: The people of Phnom Penh in the Khmer Republic have suffered three years of war, but they still find time to observe their religious festivals. This week they enjoyed a three-day holiday for one of their most important Buddhist festivals, and many of them visited their temples to present rice and household utensils to the monks.
The most important ceremony they had to observe was to pay their respects to their dead ancestors.
Though still besieged by Communist forces, the Khmer capital continues to put up a convincing display of normality, though of course the inevitable presence of soldiers on duty int he streets is an inescapable reminder that they are in the middle of a war situation.
Throughout the three days of the festival, Government troops were engaged in clashes with the Communists on the outskirts of the city. Security in Phnom Penh has to remain tight, with a front-line only a matter of miles away.
In the surrounding countryside there is still plenty of evidence of the military battle that is in progress. This American-made T28 bomber, piloted by a Khmer pilot, had to crash-land as it returned from a bombing raid over Kampong Cham. The souvenir hunter did not get far with his prize, the aircraft having landed in a rice field.