Rhodesian Prime Minister, Ian Smith, on Thursday (8 February) discussed the Zambian border situation on Rhodesian Television.
SV PAN EXTERIOR Rhodesia TV station (2 shots)
MV Mr Ian Smith approaches
SV ZOOM TO CU Smith li???aning to question
CU Smith speaks
REPORTER: "Prime Minister, have you sufficient faith in this undertaking from now on to withdraw troops hitherto concentrating on the Zambian border and reinforce the operation in the North-East?
SMITH: "I don't believe that it would be our intention to remove troops away from the border. We believe that we have adequate troops to cope with the situation - we still have reserves in hand. So there is no need to take troops away from the Zambian border. I believe that we have got to be on our guard there.
REPORTER: "Do you discount, then, sir, what President Kaunda and a number of his ministers are saying about the re-opening of their own border? Do you discount that in this hot-air atmosphere?
SMITH: "Yes, because the position even today is not as it is stated. And it is changing every day.
REPORTER: "Do you think that the situation as far as sanctions is concerned has been changed by the border incident. Is there a likelihood of a tightening of sanctions?
SMITH: "No, I don't see how this can really take place. I think we have got to a stage today as far as sanctions are concerned, where they are a bit of a farce. I think most of the world accepts this and acknowledges this. We have visitors here from Britain who go around saying but we can buy more things in Rhodesia than we can buy in Britain, so much for sanctions - and moreover, at a cheaper price than we can get them in Britain. I honestly don't believe that people today, not even the thinking members of the United Nations, treat sanctions very seriously."
Rhodesian Television has once again been the means by which Prime Minister Ian Smith has revealed Rhodesia's latest position on the Zambian border issue. He agreed to answer questions at the studios on Thursday. One of the four newsmen selected to attend asked if troops would now be moved from the Zambian border to the trouble spots in the north-east.
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The following excerpt from the conference is included in this film:
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Rhodesian Prime Minister, Ian Smith, on Thursday (8 February) discussed the Zambian border situation on Rhodesian Television. Rhodesia closed the border originally in reprisal for alleged guerrilla raids. Rhodesia subsequently re-opened the border, but Zambia is keeping the border sealed from its side. At a press conference with four selected newsmen, Mr Smith dealt with the continuing question of the United Nations-ordered international economic sanctions against Rhodesia. Mr Smith said they were having little effect and he did not think many U.N. members took them seriously any longer.