Two battalions of Cambodian airborne troops reached Skoun, 77 kilometres north of Phnom Penh, on Monday.
TRAVEL SHOT..along road - airborne troops on bus (3 shots)
TRAVEL SHOT..PAN from troops on bus to flooded land
GV in village, showing wrecked house and people cooking out of doors
GV Damaged houses (2 shots)
GV Main street, people sitting on kerb
LV TILT DOWN..damaged (but ornate) buildings
LV Damaged buildings
SV Women and children preparing food
SV Soldiers eating (2 shots)
SV Dogs in street scavenging for food
SV Wrecked building, woman with basket
SV Soldier in F/G., with automatic weapon
LV Arrival of airborne troops in street
CU Sign post "Phnom Penh 77 - Kompong Thom 91"
SV More troops arriving (2 shots)
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Background: Two battalions of Cambodian airborne troops reached Skoun, 77 kilometres north of Phnom Penh, on Monday. They were on their way to the relief of Cambodian forces besieged by the Communist forces in three separate areas to the north. They found only a few hundred people still in Skoun and most of the buildings in ruins.
Kompong Thom, 160 kilometres (100 miles), north of Phnom Penh, has been under attack since June and most of the time has been under siege.
Earlier this month, the Cambodian High Command sent a major task force to reinforce the troops holding it. Part of it reached Kompon Thom, but the greater part of it was pinned down and encircled 60 kilometres short of its target.
A relief column sent to its aid was stopped by the Communists 8 kilometres north of Skoun. The present relief column was sent to join up with the first and push on towards the relief of Kompong Thom.
Skoun had a peace time population of about 4,500. More than 90% of the population are now reported to have abandoned the town.