INTRODUCTION: Three major Kampuchean resistance groups agreed on Friday (4 September) to take joint action against the Vietnamese-backed government in their country.
GV Leaders walk into conference room (2 shots)
SV Cameramen and journalists
GV Guerrilla leaders from right of screen Khieu Samphan, Prince Sihanouk and Son Sann ZOOM IN ON Son Sann PAN ACROSS group
CU Sihanouk speaking English
SIHANOUK: (SEQ. 4) "Ladies and gentlemen, we, his excellency Son Sann, his excellency Khieu Samphan and myself, we express our gratitude to you all for coming. It is for us a great encouragement to our people who are fighting the colonialists from Vietnam who are occupying our country. We all want to liberate our country and to make once again a Kampuchean independent."
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Background: INTRODUCTION: Three major Kampuchean resistance groups agreed on Friday (4 September) to take joint action against the Vietnamese-backed government in their country. The leaders, who were meeting in Singapore, also agreed to discuss the possibility of forming a coalition government to unseat the Heng Samrin government. But they decided that their groups would retain their separate identities.
SYNOPSIS: The meeting in Singapore was between the former Kampuchean head of state, Prince Norodom Sihanouk, the leader of the anti-communist guerrillas Son Sann, and the Khmer Rouge leader Khieu Samphan. They held separate discussions before meeting to talk about joint action against the estimated 200,000 Vietnamese troops in their country.
There is a great difference between the respective strengths of the guerrilla leaders. The Khmer Rouge have the largest force of between thirty thousand and fifty-thousand, while Mr. Son Sann's Khmer People's Liberation Front has only about 5,000. Prince Sihanouk, who was deposed in 1970, is believed to have only a few hundred armed supporters. But he retains wide sympathy in the Kampuchean countryside. Prince Sihanouk has agreed to a proposal by the Khmer Rouge that Mr. Son Sann should be prime minister in a coalition government. But Mr. Son Sann still has some reservations about this plan. At the opening of the conference Prince Sihanouk expressed his gratitude to foreign powers for their support in efforts against the Heng Samrin government in the Kampuchean capital, Phnom Penh.