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The trial against the Khmer Rouge leaders
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The trial was started after many years of negotiations and is a result of a compromise. The United Nations and the international community wanted an independent court - like in Sierra Leone and Rwanda. The government in Cambodia under Hun Sen opposed this and the result was a mixed court with international prosecutors and judges together with domestic counterparts. There has been problems along the way - there has been accusations of corruption, political interference , economical problems and cooperation problems.

The first part of the trial was finished in November 2013. It focused mainly on the the Khmer Rouge siege of power in 1975 and the evacuation of the cities. The next trial, Part II starts in the fall of 2014. For charges - read below

So far Duch, the leader of Tuol Sleng has been sentenced to life in prison and Nupn Chea and Khieu Samphan have been sentenced to life imprisonment for crimes against humanity. The verdict is quoted in short form here:
Verdict. The full verdict can be found here: FULL VERDICT
The charged - suspected of war crimes and crimes against humanity
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Nuon Chea
Nuon Chea was second in the party after Pol Pot. He was also Chairman of the parliament
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Khieu Samphan
Khieu Samphan was president of Demokcratic Kampuchea


On Auust 7 2014 the verdict in part I of the trial was announced and both of thje accused were found guilty. The charges conceded the evacuation of Pnom Penh, mass transfer of population between 197577 and executions of former Lon Nol soldiers. The court rejected the arguments of the accused: that they did not know, were not responsible and did not participate in what was going on.

The trial now continues with part II. The charges concerns:

  • Genocide against the Cham and the Vietnamese (excluding crimes against humanity committed by the Revolutionary Army of Kampuchea on Vietnamese territory)
  • Forced marriages and rape (nationwide)
  • Internal purges
  • S-21 Security Centre, Kraing Ta Chan Security Centre, Au Kanseng Security Centre and Phnom Kraol Security Centre
  • 1st January Dam Worksite; Kampong Chhnang Airport Construction site, Trapeang Thma Dam Worksite, Tram Kok Cooperative;
  • Treatment of Buddhists (limited to Tram Kok Cooperatives)
  • Targeting of former Khmer Republic Officials (implementation limited to Tram Kok Cooperatives, 1st January Dam Worksite, S-21 Security Centre and Kraing Ta Chan Security Centre)

English Navigation


Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge

Cambodia 1978 - a journey with blinders on

Back after 30 years

Tuol Sleng and the Killing fields

The History

Cambodia November 2008 (Swedish captions)

Book Living Hell



More persons being charged?

The controversy between the parties in the court is mainly about Case 003 and 004 that the Hun Sen government has said they do not want to see these cases go to trial.

These cases are in an investigating stage and is about charging 5 persons on a middle level

Case 003 involved Sou Met, the former commander of the Khmer Rouge air force, but Sou Meth died in the summer of 2013 and remaining suspect is Meas Mut, the commander of the navy, and involves allegations of murder, torture, unlawful detention, forced labour and persecution.

Case 4 is investigating civilian Khmer Rouge cadres
Im Chaem, Ta Tith and Ta Tha, for crimes related to two security centers where up to 30,000 people died and also crimes related to the building of a gigantic irrigation construction.