UN delegation visit Khmer Rouge tribunal

A delegation from the Principal Donors Group of the UN visited Phnom Penh on a three day visit to oversee the trials against surviving Khmer Rouge leaders. 

Sweden is among the seven countries donating significant amounts to have the surviving leaders of the Khmer Rouge tried. Photo: Embassy of Sweden in Phnom Penh

The trials against the surviving leaders of the Khmer Rouge, and the genocide that followed their claim to rule in 1975, are still being tried in Cambodia.

These trials are not only driven by the government of Cambodia but also on donations from seven countries across the United Nations, with the EU acting as the observer. The significant doners of the UN goes under the name Principal Donors Group (PDG) and consists of the US, the UK, Australia, France, Germany, Japan, and Sweden.

And on the 25th of July the PDG paid a visit to Phnom Penh to oversee the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia’s (ECCC) work. The PDG was joined on the visit by the UN Secretary-General’s Special Expert on UN Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials, Ambassador David Scheffer.

The ECCC was established in 1997 with the sole purpose of putting those responsible of the atrocities committed during the reign of the Khmer Rouge to justice. So far three of the leaders has been sentenced to life by the tribunal while two trials has been terminated or suspended due to the accused dying before the trial was finished.

The Khmer Rouge ruled Cambodia from 1975-1979. After the regime fell more than 20.000 mass graves were uncovered, displaying the atrocities committed during the years. Official sources estimate the death toll carried out by the Khmer Rouge to somewhere between 740.000 and 3.000.000 though most agree that the most correct number is somewhere between 1.4 and 2.2 million people.

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