Page 9, 18th February 1938

18th February 1938
Page 9
Page 9, 18th February 1938 — FRANCO'S STEADY ADVANCE NF,W POSITIONS ON TWO FRONTS Growing Discontent in Red Zone

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Locations: Orrios, Barcelona, Torre, Villalba


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From Our Own Correspondent


The advance of Franco's armies continues methodically, on two fronts: Aragon and Estremadura.

On the former, despite frightful weather conditions. blizzards of snow and hail, and a temperature constantly below zero, the troops have crossed the Alfambra River, taking important positions on the Eastern side, including the villages of Villalba and Orrios, In these and the other villages, liberated last week, the inhabitants have been able to regain their homes, and to recommence an almost normal existence, after nineteen months of Red occupation.

A fantastic amount of war material and prisoners has been taken in this region, and hundreds of militia have surrendered, including a whole brigade in the small town of Torre-la-Carcel, who came over to the Nationalist lines, carrying white flags.

Estremadura Advance

In Estremadura General Queipo de Llano's forces have advanced considerably with very little resistance from the enemy. In the sector of la Serena the Sierras of Acebuche, Algallen, Peladilla, de Cabeza, have been conquered, as well as the Lomas de las Perillas, Lomas de la Nava, etc., and the important position of Zalamea.

The losses of the Reds during the last few days have been very heavy. On the Teruel front, the official report states, in addition to the ground lost (850 sq. kilos). 4,600 dead have been buried and 9,700 prisoners taken. A quantity of tanks, lorries, ammunition of all sorts, and 420 machine-guns have been captured.

Discontent in Red Zone

In the steadily diminishing Red zone discontent is growing, it is said here. In the station of Valencia the 115th Brigade mutinied, refusing to embark in the train that was to take them to the Teruel front. A siege was laid, and at 2 o'clock in the afternoon the rebels surrendered. For this 81 officers and 106 men were court martialled and shot. A demonstration took place in Barcelona on Saturday, where crowds of civilians marched round the city, clamouring for an end to the hostilities, clamouring against the various potentates and membei s of the so-called "Government."

Cries of Prieto's place is in the trenches! were raised.

It is said that Prieto and several other politicians, finding the atmosphere of Barcelona too warm for them, have taken up residence near to the French frontier.

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