Duch Verdict Announced in Cambodia: Public Forum Brings Together Victims of Khmer Rouge
August 4, 2010
Last week, after much anticipation, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Court of Cambodia (ECCC) issued the verdict in case 001 in the Khmer Rouge Tribunal. The trial found Kaing Guek Eav, commonly known under his alias “Duch” – the warden of Tuol Sleng prison, or S-21 – guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity. The guilty verdict was not a surprise, but the sentence – 35 years, reduced for time served to 19 years – surprised some, and enraged others who said it wasn’t long enough for someone who had admitted to overseeing the torture and deaths of 16,000 people. The process of the first trial, criticized as being marred by corruption, political manipulation, infighting within the court, and other issues, has not been perfect, but the verdict has tremendous meaning for people in Cambodia. Case 002, the trial of Nuon Chea, known as “Brother Number 2,” and three other surviving key Khmer Rouge leaders, is slated to begin next year.
The Asia Foundation continues to support public education efforts in Cambodia, such as a recent public forum, organized by the Center for Justice & Reconciliation, which brought together Khmer Rouge victims, Tuol Sleng survivors, and members of the ECCC to discuss the advent of the Duch verdict. CJR founder Theary Seng blogs about the event. Events like these are important to long-term reconciliation efforts in Cambodia. They also raise awareness of the younger generation in Cambodia, among whom the history of the Khmer Rouge period is not well known. At such a historic moment for Cambodia, and with such strong memories and emotions in the room, it was inspiring to be in a conference hall with hundreds of university students learning the history of Cambodia first-hand from the victims and survivors of the Khmer Rouge.
Gavin Tritt is The Asia Foundation’s Country Representative in Cambodia. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About our blog, In AsiaIn Asia is a weekly in-depth, in-country resource for readers who want to stay abreast of significant events and issues shaping Asia\’s development, hosted by The Asia Foundation. Drawing on the first-hand insight of over 70 renowned experts in over 20 countries, In Asia delivers concentrated analysis on issues affecting each region of Asia, as well as Foundation-produced reports and polls.
In Asia is posted and distributed every Wednesday evening, Pacific Time and is accessible via email and RSS. If you have any questions, please send an email to email@example.com.
ContactFor questions about In Asia, or for our cross-post and re-use policy, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Asia Foundation
465 California St., 9th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94104
PO Box 193223
San Francisco, CA 94119-3223
HIGHLIGHTS ACROSS ASIA
Promise and Flux in South Asian Electricity Trade
June 14, 2017
Infrastructure and Roads Investments in the Philippines
Forbes: Force Not Enough To Halt Islamic State-Inspired Violence In The Philippines
June 7, 2017
TIME: Afghanistan’s Front Line
June 7, 2017