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Saigon Slowly Returns to Normal in Wake of Coup

Nov. 4, 1963 - The military government in South Vietnam relaxed the martial-law curfew in Saigon today but tightened rules for Government workers. It said that those who failed to report to their jobs without good reason would be charged with desertion and punished in a manner which was unspecified. Torn by fighting for about 18 hours Friday and Saturday, Saigon was returning to normal. The curfew, established for 7 p.m. to 5 a.m., was eased to between midnight and 5 a.m. The Saigon radio announced that Nguyen Ngoc Tho, as new Premier, had chosen a Cabinet that included civilians and military officers. The former Deputy Defense Minister, Tran Trung Dung, a relative of President Ngo Dinh Diem, reported that the military leaders had given him permission to bury the President and the President’s brother, Ngo Dinh Nhu, in a double funeral. The new military rulers said over the weekend that the President and his brother had committed suicide while they were held by rebel troops. But more credence was given to unofficial accounts that said the President and his brother were assassinated by the rebels. President Kennedy was reliably reported to have expressed dismay when he received the first unconfirmed reports on Saturday that the Vietnamese leaders had been assassinated.


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