INTRODUCTION: Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union have been stating what they describe as regular joint winter army manoeuvres.
SVs (MUTE) Military trucks dumping components for temporary bridge into river (3 shots)
GVs Soldiers in boat along river and temporary bridge unfolding in water(2 shots)
SVs Soldiers assembling bridge while officer gives instructions (5 shots)
GV & SVs Troops working on bridge (4 shots)
CU Military policeman directing operations
GV Military vehicles crossing completed bridge
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: INTRODUCTION: Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union have been stating what they describe as regular joint winter army manoeuvres. The operation follow joint field exercises by Soviet and Polish infantry units, in Poland, less than a week earlier.
The Czechs were careful to point out that these joint manoeuvres with the Soviet Army were not extraordinary. But their appearance on Polish television, within the context of Czechoslovak government attacks against Poland, lends significance to the river-crossing scenes.
Ever since Poland's labour unrest began last year, the Czechs, along with the East Germans, have acted as spokesmen for the Soviet Union. Their latest attack on the free trade union movement called the efforts of Solidarity 'one-sided demagogic demands' and the issue of a five-day week 'a pretext for stirring up unrest'.
Joint commanders said the exercise had increased the readiness of the two nation's forces, and named the pontoon crossing "Friendship Bridge".