Shell and mortar fire continued on Wednesday (December 5) in the provincial capital Kompong Speu 38 miles (57 kms) southeast of Phnom Penh, capital of the Khmer Republic.
GV Pan Town with looked buildings and streets
SV Street stalls
GV Pan People in tents and eating (3)
CU Food being cooked
LV & SCU Artillery firing (2 shots)
GV & CU Mortars firing (3 shots)
GV & CU Prisoners in barbed wire cages (4 shots)
Initials SC/315 SC/344
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Shell and mortar fire continued on Wednesday (December 5) in the provincial capital Kompong Speu 38 miles (57 kms) southeast of Phnom Penh, capital of the Khmer Republic. The attack on Kompong Speu, which began on November 22, has developed into one of the largest single actions of 1973.
Now the Khmer Military Command has issued a directive calling on front-line troops to defend Kompong Speu at al costs.
Military experts believe a successful assault on the town would isolate the capital from Kompong Som -- the Khmer Republic's only deep-water port, located on the country's southeast coast.
The town has been largely evacuated, though many people are reluctant to move.
Three squadrons of armour, and troops from the 28th Brigade, the 1st Division and the 13th Division are now in defensive positions in a rough circle stretching about three miles (5 kms) around the town.
The Government forces say they are confident they can hold the town against expected further offensives by the insurgents.