Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Why are we going to have a trial now? How will the Khmer Rouge Trials benefit the people of Cambodia?

For over a quarter of a century the Cambodian people have waited for justice. Finally, the time has now come for the senior leaders of the Khmer Rouge and those most responsible for serious crimes to be held accountable for their crimes and for the historical record to be set straight. The Extraordinary Chambers are designed to provide fair, public trials in conformity with international standards. The chief goal is to provide justice to the Cambodian people, those who died and the survivors. It is hoped that fair trials will ease the burden that weighs on the survivors. The trials are also for the new generation - to educate Cambodia’s youth about the darkest chapter in our country’s history.

By judging the criminals in fair and open trials and by punishing those most responsible, the trials will strengthen our rule of law and set an example to people who disobey the law in Cambodia and to cruel regimes worldwide. If criminals know that they will be held accountable, they may be deterred. By supporting and learning about justice, we can all contribute to the reconstruction of our society.

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