Brother No. 2, Nuon Chea, Arrested in Kampuchea

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[from the Bangkok Post]

Phnom Penh (dpa) – Former top Khmer Rouge leader Nuon Chea will stay in jail for at least a year facing charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity, the court set up to bring justice to the victims of the regime said Friday.

In a lengthy press statement explaining the charges and the decision, co-investigating judges of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) You Bunleng and Marcel Lemonde issued a provisional detention order against the 82-year-old former Khmer Rouge security chief who is also known as Brother Number 2.

The statement said Nuon Chea was being charged with crimes against humanity which encompasses murder, torture, imprisonment, persecution, extermination, deportation, forcible transfer, enslavement and “other inhumane acts.”

War crimes was a charge based on the Geneva Convention and included wilful killing and wilfully causing great suffering or serious injury and wilful deprivation of rights to a fair trial, the statement said.

Co-investigators said they had decided to remand Nuon Chea because he posed a potential threat to witnesses.

“He is alleged to have, throughout Cambodia during the period April 17, 1975 to January 6, 1979 … planned, instigated, ordered, directed or otherwise aided and abetted in the commission of the aforementioned crimes, by exercising authority and effective control over the internal security apparatus of Democratic Kampuchea,” the statement said.

The only other man yet to be charged by the ECCC, former commandant of the notorious S-21 torture centre Duch, or Kang Keng Iev, alleged in 1999 that Nuon Chea instigated much of the killing during the Khmer Rouge’s Democratic Kampuchea regime.

Up to 2 million Cambodians died during the reign of the ultra-Maoists.

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More reports: AFP, AP, BBC, Reuters, World Politics Review.

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