France and Mexico came out in support of Leftist guerrillas on Friday (28 August) in their fight to overthrow El Salvador's ruling Junta.
GV Damaged building in San Salvador
GV Damaged petrol station, people clearing up debris (2 shots)
GV & SV Workmen repairing damaged power pole(2 shots)
SV & GV Police car and damaged car dealer's premises with cars (3 shots)
GV INT Workers clearing out bomb damage from building
SV EXT ZOOM TO CU Deane Hinton with Salvadoran military officials
GV PAN TILT DOWN Transport plane landing at military airfield
SV's Military personnel unloading plane with Hinton watching (2 shots)
SCU Hinton speaking to U.S. Air Force officer
GV Helicopter being unloaded from plane
GV ZOOM Planes and helicopters on airfield as Hinton walks past (2 shots)
SV INT News conference with Salvadoran Left (2 shots) (MUTE)
SCU Joaquin Samayoa speaking in English
GV PAN EXT Demonstrators with banners march through streets (4 shots) (MUTE)
SEQ. 13: SAMAYOA: "If a political or negotiated solution cannot be accomplished, the war will continue. We have the capability to continue".
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: France and Mexico came out in support of Leftist guerrillas on Friday (28 August) in their fight to overthrow El Salvador's ruling Junta. A joint statement from both countries said they recognised the alliance of the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) and the Revolutionary Democratic Front (FDR) as a representative political force with the legitimacy to enter negotiations with the Government to end the crisis. The FMLN is the main leftist guerrilla group in El Salvador and the FDR its political arm. The recognition came soon after a round of bombings in the capital San Salvador.
SYNOPSIS: Following a recent military defeat at the hands of the Salvadorean army in Morazan Province, the Leftist Guerrillas struck back. Twelve powerful bombs were set off by the guerrillas within the space of two hours causing extensive damage. The targets included factories, a petrol station, and a car dealer's premises and private houses. Many parts of San Salvador suffered blackouts as a result of the explosions.
No one was killed during the attacks, although two women were injured. A Honda dealer's showrooms and several cars were extensively damaged by the charges of dynamite.
As military aid from America continued to flow in, United States ambassador Deane Hinton joined Salvadorean military officials to watch the latest shipments arriving by American transport planes This included one of a further four helicopters.
The helicopters and their spares were sorely needed by the Air Force which has the capacity to operate ten, but has seven currently out of service. They had broken down during recent fighting against the guerrillas.
A team of American servicemen has also gone to El Salvador to assemble and test the machines. The four helicopters are in addition to the 35-million U.S. dollar military aid programme authorised by the Reagan Administration which supports the junta. The American Secretary-of-State Alexander Haig said in Washington on Wednesday (26 August) that extra equipment was needed to counter the renewed guerrilla activity, which he blamed on substantial Cuban support. Ambassador Hinton was told of the operational role for the helicopters, including the transporting of troops to combat areas.
In their statement recognising the guerrillas, the French and Mexicans called for free elections. At their Mexico City headquarters, the guerrillas held a news conference.
There has been growing concern in Mexico City about the effects a continuing war in El Salvador will have on Mexico. Demonstrations in support of the guerrillas are becoming more frequent. Most people in Mexico are opposed to America's military aid programme and believe the only way to solve the crisis is for a ceasefire and a negotiated settlement.