More refugees are fleeing from Long Khanh Province, some 40 miles (65 kms) northeast of Saigon, adding to the vast numbers of refugees that have been evacuating from the Central Highlands this week.
GV refugee on fleeing along highway (2 shots)
GV little girl carrying sock along highway
GV more refugees along highway with belongings
GV troops at checkpoint along highway
GV refugees along highway as troops provide protection
GV ARVN troops with APC along highway
GV APC along highway (2 shots)
GV ARVN troops at second highway checkpoint
GV ARVN troops on highway
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: More refugees are fleeing from Long Khanh Province, some 40 miles (65 kms) northeast of Saigon, adding to the vast numbers of refugees that have been evacuating from the Central Highlands this week.
Most of the refugees fleeing down Highway 1 on Friday (21 March) are from Dinh Quan.
For the past three days, ARVN troops from the 18th Division have been engaged in bitter fighting against Communist forces near the district town for control of the last main road loading into the Highlands -- Highway 20.
As the refugees fled down Highway 1 towards the Saigon area, troops provided protection against possible attacks from Communist forces.
The military situation in South Vietnam in the past week has rapidly deteriorated. ARVN troops have been retreating from at least 14 provinces, making it the most serious defeat for the Saigon government in 29 years of warfare in South Vietnam.
Field reports said that by Friday, Communist forces had firm control of seven provinces, four other were in the process of being evacuated and another three were seriously threatened by advancing North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops.