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United States Ship Seized By Cambodian Gunboat #37098

ABC Evening News for Monday, May 12, 1975
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(Studio) Cambodian gunboat fires upon and seizes unarmed American merchant ship in Gulf of Thailand; 39 crew members aboard. In similar incident, Cambodians captured Panamanian ship on high seas and later released it. President Ford calls seizure an act of piracy and warns of serious consequences if ship not released immediately.
REPORTER: Harry Reasoner

(White House) White House not treating incident as major crisis yet, although official language strong. [Press Secretary Ron NESSEN - says President has met with National Security Council; instructs State Department to demand immediate release of ship.] Ship captured while en route from Hong Kong to Thailand. It's believed ship taken to Cambodian port Kompong Som. US officials unsure how to communicate with new Khmer Rouge government in Cambodia because there are no diplomatic channels.
REPORTER: Tom Jarriel

(DC) Rptdly. some ships of 7th fleet ordered to move in general direction of trouble, but ordered to take no specific action. Enough military strength present in Thailand for helicopter raid into Cambodia, but it's not likely to solve problem.
REPORTER: Frank Tomlinson

(Studio) Congress reaction to seizure follows.
REPORTER: Howard K. Smith

(Capitol Hill) Most Senators think United States should react with patience. [Senator Hubert HUMPHREY - thinks situation calls for use of calm and reason.] [Senator James BUCKLEY - calls for immediate retaliation against Cambodia.] Most Senators take Senator Hugh Scott's position, calling for calm and serious thought.
REPORTER: David Garcia

(Saint Louis, Missouri) Secretary of State Henry Kissinger here to make speech but has no comment on Cambodian seizure of United States ship. Problem now is communicating displeasure to Cambodian government; complaints apparently routed through 3rd cntrys.; People's Republican of China, North Vietnam and North Korea only cntrys. represented in Phnom Penh. Senior United States officials hint at possible military action.
REPORTER: Ted Koppel

(Studio) Retired Navy commander Lloyd Bucher whose spy ship Pueblo captured by North Korea in `68 thinks President Ford should take swift, positive action for release of United States merchant ship; if any crew members harmed, immediate retaliatory action in order.
REPORTER: Harry Reasoner

Reporter(s):
Garcia, David;
Jarriel, Tom;
Koppel, Ted;
Reasoner, Harry;
Smith, Howard K.;
Tomlinson, Frank
Duration:
00:06:30

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