Five Libyan transport aircraft carrying 400 troops were reported to have landed at Entebbe Airport in Uganda on Friday (22 September) after being grounded at Khartoum for two days for entering Sudanese air space without permission.
SV Ext. Troops double march past reviewing stands (3 shots)
SV Crowd watches as troop carries pass. (2 shots)
SV Armoured cars along street.
SV T55 tanks past (4 shots)
SV Pan from jetprop aircraft to VC10 on tarmac.
SV Coaches with evacuees arriving and evacuees board aircraft. (6 shots)
LIBYAN TROOPS IN PARADE; ARMOURED CARS AND TANKS ROLL PAST; RAF AIRCRAFT IN MALTA; SERVICE FAMILIES BOARD AIRCRAFT.
Initials DF/JM 15.15 DF/JM 15.40
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Background: Five Libyan transport aircraft carrying 400 troops were reported to have landed at Entebbe Airport in Uganda on Friday (22 September) after being grounded at Khartoum for two days for entering Sudanese air space without permission.
The troops had been sent to help the Ugandan Army fight what it claims is an insurgent force near the border with Tanzania. The reports said the aircraft took off from Khartoum early on Friday morning and appeared to head for Libya, but turned and flew on to Uganda.
The Libyan President, Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, has often offered his troops to other countries to fight what he sees as "Zionist expansion". Libya's armed forces total about ten thousand men, well-equipped with Soviet and British made tanks, American artillery and French fighter aircraft.
A statement by Uganda Radio on Friday (22 September) that more than eight thousand Asians would have to leave Uganda within 48 hours, coupled with reports of harassment of Europeans in Uganda, led to speculation in Britain that the Government might have to mount a large evacuation operation. There are more than seven thousand Britons in Uganda and about three thousand people of other nationalizes.
A Government spokesman said a close watch was being kept on the situation, but no decision had yet been made to evacuate.
In this event, it is possible that Royal Air Force transport aircraft operating from Malta would mount the airlift. In January this year, the RAF flew more than three thousand service families from Malta during the dispute over British bases on the island.
SYNOPSIS: These Paratroops jogging past the reviewing stand during a military parade in Tripoli in 1970 are among the ten thousand men in Libya's well-trained and equipped armed forces. Libya's President, Colonel Muammar Gadaffi, has not hesitated to offer his troops to countries, like Uganda, which oppose Israel.
On Friday, it was reported that Libyan aircraft carrying four hundred soldiers arrived in Uganda after being held in Khartoum for two days. The troops were sent to help the Ugandan Army in its battle with what it claims are insurgents near the Tanzanian border.
The Libyan Army is equipped with Soviet and British-made tanks and the Air Force is receiving Mirgae fighter aircraft from France. Military experts say Libyan soldiers are efficient and well-equipped and their reported involvement in Uganda has further escalated a serious situation.
The ability of Britain's Royal Air Force to mount an evacuation from Uganda if needed, was demonstrated in Malta in January, when transport aircraft shifted more than three thousand service families in a matter of days during the dispute over British bases on the island. Aircraft operating from Malta could be used in any plan to airlift British civilians from Uganda.
The Ugandan statement on Friday that more than eight thousand Asians would have to leave within forty-eight hours, and reports of Europeans being harassed, led to speculation in Britain that a major evacuation would have to be carried out. A Government spokesman said a close watch was being kept on the situation in Uganda and there had been no decision yet on a possible evacuation. There are more than seven thousand Britons living in Uganda. Evacuating them in a major airlift would be a much more formidable task than the evacuation of these service families from Malta.