Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Who will be put on trial?

In the spirit of achieving justice, truth and national reconciliation, the Cambodian Government and the UN decided that the court should limit prosecutions to the senior leaders of DemocraticKampuchea (the name of the state established by the Khmer Rouge) who planned or gave orders, as well as those most responsible for committing serious crimes. It is expected that only a small number of people will fall within this limit and be tried.

Over the years, tens of thousands of ordinary Khmer Rouge soldiers have defected to the Government. They have nothing to
fear from this court. The policy of national reconciliation is still in place. Please remember that only the most culpable people will be tried under the law governing the special tribunal.

The court will have the responsibility to decide exactly who was a ‘senior leader’ and who was ‘most responsible’ for the crimes committed by the Khmer Rouge. The court will only seek out those people, and not every former member of Khmer Rouge or every person in the villages of Cambodia who may have committed crimes during the Khmer Rouge period.

  • Low level and middle-ranking Khmer Rouge members who arenot most responsible for serious crimes will not be prosecuted.Many are now re-integrated into our society. Hopefully theseindividuals will live peaceful lives according to Buddhistprinciples and assist in the development of our country.
  • Children or other family members or associates of Khmer Rouge leaders will not be responsible for their parents’ or associates’ crimes. Nobody will be responsible for another person’s actions just because they are related to or associated with that person.
  • Only people who are still alive will be tried. There will be no posthumous trials.

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