Battle of Svay Rieng
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The Battle of Svay Rieng was the last major offensive operation of the Vietnam War to be mounted by the South Vietnamese Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) against the Communist People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN) forces.
On 27 March PAVN sapper units attacked Đức Huệ which was held by the ARVN 83rd Ranger Battalion. The initial attack was repulsed as was a subsequent infantry attack by the PAVN 5th Division. Following the failure of these attacks the PAVN laid siege to Đức Huệ.
In last April the ARVN launched a large-scale assault to break the PAVN siege. ARVN Regional Forces established blocking positions on the southwestern edge of the 5th Division perimeter as the South Vietnam Air Force conducted airstrikes against base areas of the 5th Division. The ARVN 40th Infantry Regiment and the 7th Ranger Group, under the command of General Thuần, pushed around Đức Huệ towards the Cambodian border. On April 28, the PAVN 275th Regiment and the 25th Sapper Battalion launched a fierce attack on the Long Khot District Town as eleven ARVN Battalions were preparing for a major assault, however the PAVN attack did not deter the movement of ARVN forces. On the morning of 29 April, ARVN armoured forces smashed across the Cambodian border west of Gò Dầu Hạ directly towards the PAVN 5th Division Headquarters.
The movement of the ARVN forces was such a threat that the PAVN were forced to defend their logistical installations with units from Long Khot. The 275th Regiment was threatened with isolation when the ARVN advanced into the Elephant's Foot. As part of the operation, the ARVN penetrated 16 km into Cambodian territory with surprise attacks on Communist positions, with some ARVN units conducting sweep operations between Đức Huệ and Gò Dầu Hạ. By the time all South Vietnamese operations were ceased, PAVN communication lines and logistical installations were severely damaged. Due to the operational secrecy, speed and accuracy of the operation, South Vietnamese casualties were kept to a minimum, while the North Vietnamese suffered heavy losses in terms of manpower and equipment.
- Dougan. C, Doyle. E, Lipsman. S, Martland. T, Weiss. S (1983) The Vietnam Experience: The False Peace, page 123-124. Boston Publishing Company, USA.
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