UN SG calls for 'long overdue' trials of Khmer Rouge leaders

[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Tuesday marked the tenth anniversary of the death of dictator Pol Pot [BBC profile] by urging [statement; UN News report] the international community and the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) [official website; JURIST news archive] to continue efforts to bring senior leaders of the Khmer Rouge to justice. Ban said:

I would like to remind the international community of the urgent importance of bringing to closure one of history's darkest chapters. The United Nations and the Royal Government of Cambodia remain actively engaged in efforts to hold the Khmer Rouge senior leaders and those most responsible accountable for their horrific crimes. With the support of the international community, it is my hope that the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia will soon deliver long-overdue justice for the people of Cambodia.
Established by a 2001 law [text as amended in 2005, PDF] to investigate and try surviving Khmer Rouge officials, the ECCC currently has five former Khmer Rouge leaders in custody charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity for their roles in the Communist regime of the 1970s. To date, no top officials have faced trials.

The Khmer Rouge [JURIST news archive] is generally held responsible for the genocide of an estimated 1.7 million Cambodians [PPU backgrounder] who died between 1975 and 1979. AFP has more.

 

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