Despite constant charges of ceasefire violations the talks between representatives of the South Vietnamese Government and the Viet Cong still continue in Saigon.
GV EXTERIOR - ARVN building
GV & CU General Hiep talking to press (7 shots)
LV Viet Cong briefing hut
CU Viet Cong flag
LV & CU VC officer talking to press (??? shots)
MV Viet Cong officer shows map to reporters
Initials ES.2300 ES. 23.26
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Despite constant charges of ceasefire violations the talks between representatives of the South Vietnamese Government and the Viet Cong still continue in Saigon.
For newsmen covering the negotiations there is a seemingly endless stream of press briefings to be attended.
Briefings given by the South Vietnamese Government usually dwell on the number of alleged ceasefire violations started by the Viet Cong. Military spokesman give a daily breakdown of where and when the violations occurred and how many ??? both military and civilian resulted. On a more mundane level a session is also devoted to progress on the talks being held in Saigon between the two sides. The session deals with matters such as prisoner exchanges, air routes for the International Commission for Central and supervision (ICCS) helicopters and moves towards the holding of general elections in the South.
The Viet Cong press briefings are held inside their compound at Tan Son Nhut airbase, in quarters formerly occupied by American army officers. Until recently no Vietnamese newsman were allowed to cover the Viet Cong press briefings.
The Viet Cong briefings follow much the same lines as the South Vietnamese. Alleged government-incited attacks are cited and more recently they have been claiming that American aircraft have been bombing Communist positions in South Vietnam near the border with the Khmer Republic.
Briefings given by the Viet Cong are slightly more informal than the Government sessions. Newsman sit at Desks around the room, and light refreshments are served.
These briefings are likely to continue until some form of agreement is reached in the South on the form of any future government. Until such time newsman must attend both sessions to hear about the latest violations of the ceasefire.