[Recuerde el genocidio de la dictadura comunista de los Jemeres Rojos en Camboya, 1975-79]

noticias : ASIA :: CAMBOYA


Clashes erupt at Sam Raisy Party rally to claim for an independent investigation over overwhelming fraud by corrupt Prime Minister's ruling party -once again- in last election results.

Police have fired tear gas and water cannon to disperse thousands of demonstrators in Cambodia's capital, Phnom Penh, demanding an independent investigation into a July election they say was rigged.
Clashes broke out twice on Sunday between separate groups of protesters hurling rocks at hundreds of riot police who used baton charges after supporters of the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) tried to remove razor-wire barricades.
Witnesses told AFP agency that at least one person had been killed and several others wounded in the clashes.
Military police spokesman Kheng Tito said he was unable to confirm the death and said that security forces had not fired live ammunition.
The latest incidents of violence and CNRP's refusal to heed instruction not to march beyond the protest site have taken a six-week standoff representing one of the biggest tests of Prime Minister Hun Sen's three-decade grip on power to a new and precarious level.
Carrying banners reading "my vote, my nation" and "where is my vote?" - in a reference to the alleged poll fraud which saw the Cambodian's People's Party (CPP) win 68 seats compared to the 55 alloted to the CNRP - many protesters carried backpacks apparently in preparation for a long stay.

... more in AlJazeera - BBC - The Guardian - Le Figaro - Le Monde - Liberation - MNSBC
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From London City banker to a life of philanthropy in Cambodia: When Andy Booth first visited Cambodia, little did he realise that he would end up quitting his city-slicker London life to set up a non-profit travel agency that changes lives... [+]

Cambodian opposition leader "pardoned" of no crime but to contest corrupt Prime Minister -a former Khemer Rouge- by king: Royal decree paves way for self-exiled Sam Rainsy to return home and campaign in upcoming general election.

Cambodian opposition leader Sam Rainsy has been pardoned by the country's monarch, King Norodom Sihamoni, clearing the way for the self-exiled politician to return home and campaign in the upcoming general election.
A copy of the pardon, signed by the king, was shown to several news outlets on Friday.
Rainsy has lived abroad since 2009 to avoid prison on charges widely seen as politically motivated. It was not immediately clear if he would be able to run in the July 28 polls.
The pardon was requested by Prime Minister Hun Sen. He wrote in a letter to the king that the pardon should be granted "in the spirit of national reconciliation, national unity and to make sure the national election process is conducted under the principal of democracy with freedom and pluralism and jointly by all involved parties".'
The request came after the United States and others said the exclusion of Rainsy from elections called into question the polls' legitimacy. US legislators called for the US to cut off aid to Cambodia unless Hun Sen allowed a free vote.
Hun Sen, who is one of Southeast Asia's longest-serving leaders, is expected to extend his 28-year rule in the election.

Ç... more in AlJazeera - BBC - South China Morning Post - Libération / And in the web of Sam Raisy Party

Huge crowds mourn Cambodia's former king Norodom Sihanouk, despite his role in bringing to power the Khmer Rouge who terrorized the nation and murder millions.

Hundreds of thousands of Cambodians have gathered to pay their final respects to their former king Norodom Sihanouk, who died of a heart attack in Beijing in October, aged 89.
The body of the late monarch was being paraded through the capital, Phnom Penh, from the Royal Palace to an ornate, custom-built crematorium in a city park.
Friday's funeral ceremony included a 101-gun salute and gave the crowds the chance to bid a final farewell to their king, who was placed on the throne by the French at the age of just 18, but developed into a canny political survivor.
...But Sihanouk's record is not without reproach.
After being ousted by the US-backed General Lon Nol in 1970 he aligned himself with the Khmer Rouge, only to be placed under house arrest as the communist regime terrorised the nation, killing up to two million people, including five of his own children.
Before the Vietnamese toppled the Khmer Rouge in 1979, Sihanouk took exile in China, regaining his throne in 1993, although his influence was greatly diminished.
Foreign dignitaries including French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, Japan's Prince Akishino and a host of Asian leaders or high-ranking officials are due to attend the cremation.
... more in AlJazeera


People & Power: Cambodia's Orphan Business

Increasing numbers of tourists including well-intentioned volunteers keen to help war-torn Cambodia are volunteering in the country's orphanages. Volumes of research around the world have shown that orphanage care is associated with long-term psychological concerns. People & Power investigates the concept of "voluntourism" which is inadvertently doing more harm than good to Cambodian children, as well as the disturbing trend of exploitation by some companies that organise volunteers or run orphanages.

Violent land evictions without any legal compensation

The Pepper Fields

...more in AlJazeera

Corrupt Prime Minister Hun Sen Bodyguards Questioned Over Koh Kong Assault

Koh Kong provincial court on Tuesday began questioning three senior bodyguards to Prime Minister Hun Sen who are accused of handcuffing and severely beating four men in a Koh Kong hotel.
Bun Sokha, 38, the deputy chief of staff of Hun Sen’s bodyguard unit, was arrested Sunday alongside two other men, Som Veansna, 37, and Meng Chheang, 21, after an altercation at the hotel that led to the alleged assault of two civilians, a hotel security guard and a military policeman.
Police said the assault occurred when one of the purported victims, Sieng Thairath, 32, and a security guard attempted to retrieve a necklace from the room he had vacated at Koh Kong City Hotel, which was by then occupied by the wife of Bun Sokha.

Denied admittance, Sieng Thairath began knocking on the door. Bun Sokha’s wife then called her husband, who appeared with the other bodyguards and allegedly handcuffed the two men, then detained two more men when they tried to help.
...more in Voice of America - Periodista Digital
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Asean civil society under stress ...[+]


Khmer Rouge leaders 'had control over crimes'
UN-backed genocide tribunal hears how leaders had life-and-death authority over Cambodia while in power

Pol Pot's close confederates cannot solely blame their late leader for the atrocities that took place under Cambodia's Khmer Rouge regime, a prosecutor at the genocide tribunal in Phnom Penh said on Tuesday.
Andrew Cayley said that like Pol Pot, the three ageing former members of the regime now on trial exercised life-and-death authority over what they called Democratic Kampuchea while in power in 1975-79.
"The accused cannot credibly claim they did not know and had no control over the crimes that occurred," he told the UN-backed tribunal.
An estimated 1.7 million people died of execution, starvation, exhaustion or lack of medical care as a result of the Khmer Rouge's radical policies, which sought to create a pure agrarian socialist society.
Cayley was speaking on the trial's second day, continuing the prosecution's opening statement. On Monday, prosecutors related a litany of horrors, large and small, recalling how the Khmer Rouge sought to crush not just its enemies, but seemingly the human spirit.

...more in The Guardian - BBC - AlJazeera - El Mundo - France 24

Cambodia tribunal declares Khmer Rouge 'first lady' unfit to stand trial
Judges say Ieng Thirith, 79, suffering from symptoms consistent with Alzheimer's and trial 'would not serve interests of justice'

The international tribunal trying the top commanders of Cambodia's Khmer Rouge regime has ruled that former minister Ieng Thirith was mentally ill and unfit to stand trial.
In the latest setback for proceedings that have been mired in controversy, it was announced on Thursday that
Ieng Thirith, the 79-year-old French-educated former Shakespeare scholar know as "the first lady of the Khmer Rouge", would be released from detention if no appeal was lodged by prosecutors.
The decision by the extraordinary chambers in the court of Cambodia (ECCC) may be another blow to Cambodians seeking closure from the horrors of Pol Pot's "killing fields" revolution, during which an estimated 1.7 million people - a quarter of the population - died between 1975 and 1979 due to execution, torture, starvation or disease.
It means the ECCC's high-profile second case, in which opening statements will be read on Monday, could now feature just three defendants - "Brother Number Two" Nuon Chea, former president Khieu Samphan and former foreign minister Ieng Sary.
Ieng Thirith was a sister-in-law of Pol Pot, the late architect of the "year zero" ultra-Maoist revolution. She was charged with crimes against humanity and genocide after being arrested in November 2007.

...more in The Guardian


Cambodia festival turns deadly.
Hundreds of people die in stampede as millions gather to celebrate the annual water festival.

Hundreds of people have been killed in a stampede at the water festival in Phnom Pehn, the Cambodian capital.
About two million people had gathered along the Tonlee Sap river for the last day of the festival.
At least 345 people have been killed in a stampede at a water festival on a small island in the Cambodian capital.
The crush occurred on the island of Koh Pich following a traditional boat race along the Tonle Sap river on Monday evening.
Speaking in a live television broadcast, Hun Sen, the prime minister, said the incident was one of the country's worst disasters ever.
"This is the biggest tragedy since the Pol Pot regime," he said, referring to the leader of the brutal regime that ruled the country between 1975 and 1979 and left up to a quarter of the population dead.
Hun Sen declared Thursday would be a national day of mourning, and ordered all government ministries to fly the flag at half-mast.
So Cheata, a soft drink vendor, said the trouble began when 10 people fell unconscious in the crush of the crowd. She said that caused a panic, which then turned into a stampede. Many people were trampled.
Part of the crowd pushed onto a bridge, which also jammed up, with people falling under others and off the bridge. Some witnesses said lighting cables had come loose on the bridge, electrocuting people. So Cheata said hundreds of hurt people were left lying on the ground afterwards.

...more in Al Jazeera - BBC - France 24 - El País - El Mundo - The Guardian - La Repubblica - Die Zeit - The Phnom Penh Post

Lea también : Otra vez el horror

Sam Rainsy - Interview with Australia Network

The leader of Cambodia's main opposition party, Sam Rainsy, is visiting Australia in an attempt to raise awareness of human rights abuses in Cambodia.
Mr Rainsy has been living in exile in France for a year, after he was sentenced to jail in absentia by a closed court in Cambodia.

Cambodian opposition leader Sam Rainsy says he will use his current visit to Australia to urge the government to do more to prevent human rights abuses in his country.
Mr Rainsy - who heads the eponymous opposition Sam Rainsy party - says he also plans to meet and thank Cambodian-Australians for supporting his efforts to bring democracy to Cambodia.
The opposition leader is currently living in Paris, and faces more than 10 years in prison if he returns to Cambodia after being convicted in absentia of uprooting border markings and publishing a false map of the border with Vietnam.
His jail sentence that's been widely criticised by human rights groups.
...more in Australia Networks News - ABC - And in the website of the Sam Rainsy Party

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Ghost workers get immunity from corrupt Prime Minister

Mu Sochua Seeks Reform of Judiciary to deliver Justice:

Outspoken opposition parliamentarian Mu Sochua, who lost a defamation case to Prime Minister Hun Sen that resulted in a salary deduction, has vowed to go after the courts to demand reform of the country’s judicial system.
“We, the opposition party together with all the people, demand a justice system that is truly independent and does not act as a political tool,” Mu Sochua said as a guest on “Hello VOA” Monday.
...Mu Sochua appealed to Cambodians to rally behind the opposition Sam Rainsy Party to demand that judges renounce membership from the central committee of the ruling Cambodian People’s Party and to call for an active Supreme Council of Magistracy to oversee judges’ performance. She also called for sufficient lawyers to provide legal services to the people.
“This can only be done when the Sam Rainsy Party is elected and Mr. Sam Rainsy becomes prime minister,” she said. “We are determined to get this done.
Voice of America Cambodia - The Phnom Penh Post - BBC World Services - Sam Rainsy Party

Hun Sen's corrupt 25 years regime profits from suppression of freedom of expression and foreing aid complicity:
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen is savoring another victory. His latest triumph: a string of verdicts against an outspoken female opposition lawmaker, Mu Sochua, who had accused him of making derogatory remarks about her.
His target, however, refuses to be silenced even after her latest showdown with Hun Sen, who celebrated 25 years as the Southeast Asian country’s leader this year. Nor has she changed her views about the Supreme Court, which upheld a lower court’s decision against the outspoken parliamentarian in a bizarre case that also put the country’s judiciary on trial.
The superior court’s verdict on Jun. 3, including a fine of 16.5 million riels ( US$ 4,000), was the third judicial ruling against the 54-year-old Mu Sochua. In August last year, the Phnom Penh Municipal Court found the former minister of women’s affairs guilty of having insulted Hun Sen. In October 2009, she lost again following an attempt with the Court of Appeal.
"I will not pay the fine. They can confiscate my property. They can even take me to jail," a defiant Mu Sochua told IPS during a telephone interview from the Cambodian capital. "I think it is a serious mistake for the ruling party to push this case at a time when the country needs reform of the judiciary."
"The judges were under trial from the beginning," she observed of the case that began early last year, when she first filed a defamation case against Hun Sen. It followed a speech he had delivered in Khmer, where he referred to her as "cheung klang" (meaning "strong legs"), a demeaning term for women in the country.
But the powerful leader of the Cambodian People’s Party turned the tables on the parliamentarian from the Sam Rainsy Party. The ruling party stripped Mu Sochua of her parliamentary immunity to help Hun Sen file a counter defamation charge against her. Adding insult to injury, a court dismissed the defamation case Mu Sochua had first filed against the premier.
Hun Sen’s latest judicial triumph has broader implications in a country struggling to get back on its feet after a 1991 peace deal brought to an end decades of bloody conflict. The timing of the superior court’s verdict, in fact, has triggered questions about the role Western donors have in aiding Cambodia’s reconstruction.
On Jun. 3, while Hun Sen was celebrating the silencing of one of the country’s foremost champions of democracy, free speech and human rights, international donors pledged $ 1.1 billion in aid for this year, up from last year’s $ 950 million.
The largest aid package in Cambodia’s history came at the end of a two-day donor conference in Phnom Penh, lifting the pressure on the Hun Sen administration to push ahead with five areas of reform. Three areas spelled out in 2004 by donors included changes to fight corruption and increase accountability, legal and judicial reform and protection of human rights and public administration reform.
...The financial windfall for the Cambodian regime—despite a record of defamation lawsuits against opposition parliamentarians, intimidation of the media, a growing list of corruption scandals in the natural resources sector and stripping the environment for private profit – has disheartened civil society groups.
"All the talk by donors about strengthening democracy and human rights in Cambodia is just words; it is not meaningful," said Hang Chhaya, executive director of the Khmer Institute of Democracy, which seeks to champion democratic values in the Southeast Asian state.
...more in The Irrawaddy - The New York Times - Khmer Institute of Democracy - Sam Raisy Party - Mu Sochua MP- Andy's Cambodia - The Eleanor Roosevelt Project - The Haas Awards - Violence against women in politics - - Human Rights Watch

Professor Allida Black presents the Eleanor Roosevelt Award to the Cambodian Parliamentarian and Human Rights Advocate Mu Sochua in Geneva.
The Courage to Lead Summit brought together experienced and emerging human rights leaders from over thirty countries to share and build on their experiences and to promote mentoring and collaboration among women who play a key role in promoting human rights worldwide.
The conference is organized by The Eleanor Roosevelt Project of the George Washington University and Vital Voices Global Partnership with support from the U.S. Department of State, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the International Labour Organization. The Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO) coordinated logistics for the event which was held at ILO headquarters in Geneva.

by Pepe Eliaschev
... Pero aunque no lo veamos, está. Y lo más terrible es que no se habla, ni se escribe de aquella tragedia, y por varias razones.
La primera es que hay asuntos más fáciles y habituales, aunque formen parte del paisaje y nadie se horrorice ya de ellos. La otra es porque detenerse ante un agujero negro de esta profundidad y este diámetro supone un viaje sin regreso al terror y un desafío colosal a la capacidad humana de convivir con la esencialidad del mal.
Hace apenas cuarenta años, a partir de 1970 y hasta mediados de 1975, en el pequeño reino de Camboya, algo siniestro y de magnitud inconcebible sucedió. Nunca se sabrá la verdad, entre otras razones porque decenas de millares de cadáveres ya fueron pulverizados, pero se estima que no menos de 2.2 millones de personas fueron asesinadas por el régimen comunista de los Khmer Rouges, o Jemeres Rojos.
El khmer es la lengua nacional de esta pequeña nación del sudeste asiático, cuya independencia nacional le fue arrancada a Francia en 1953, un año antes de que la metrópoli colonial fuera derrotada en la parte norte de la vecina Vietnam. Algo sucedió en Camboya que debe ser conocido, algo siniestro e indecible. Además, algo igualmente elocuente ha ocurrido desde que la espeluznante tragedia concluyó.
No ha habido, y es casi seguro que jamás haya una rendición de cuentas. Es una historia macabra de asombrosas dimensiones, una calamidad ante la que nadie quiere detenerse. Es siniestramente seductora.
Fue en 1970, cuando los Estados Unidos todavía se ilusionaban con que podrían ganar la sangrienta guerra de Vietnam, que en su vecina Camboya un golpe de estado armado por Washington derrocó a la corrupta monarquía feudal de Norodom Sihanouk, que hacía años procuraba una patética neutralidad entre los poderes de la región (chinos, norteamericanos, soviéticos, vietnamitas) y encaramó a Lon Nol.
Hace pocos meses, lo describió así el novelista norteamericano Ben Ehrenreich: “Apalancado por dinero y armas norteamericanas, Lon Nol encabezó durante cinco años una cleptocracia corrupta y crecientemente acorralada”. Tras un viaje a Camboya, publicó una larga “carta” estremecedora en Harper’s Magazine. Ehrenreich describe en ella sus hallazgos mortuorios en uno de los pocos museos hoy disponibles para que la humanidad reconozca el rostro cadavérico de su propia maldad espectral.
El régimen de Lon Nol colapsó en 1975, arrasado por los Jemeres Rojos, que se alzaron con el país gracias al apoyo de China. Lanzada entonces a una pelea monumental con la Unión Soviética y, puesto que Moscú apoyaba macizamente a un Vietnam del Norte (Hanoi) que conducía la guerra contra los estadounidenses en todo el país, China le dio todo su apoyo y aval a la banda de alucinados que en 1975 entró a la vieja capital de Camboya, Phnom Penh, y se apoderó del desgraciado país.
Lo que sucedió a partir de ese momento trasciende la mera tragedia. Fue una bacanal de sangre, perpetrada por una banda de monjes totalitarios, muchos de ellos educados en universidades de París. Resueltos a crear el “hombre nuevo”, vaciaron las ciudades en pocos meses. Fue una vasta e inclemente matanza de seres humanos, acusados uniformemente de ser portadores de la ideología y el estilo de vida de la burguesía. ...más en Perfil

Lost in Cambodia: Why did a radical British professor become a cheer-leader for Pol Pot? And why was he murdered on the very day he'd met the brutal dictator? Andrew Anthony on the extraordinary life and death of Malcolm Caldwell.
The name of Malcolm Caldwell is remembered now by very few people: some friends, family, colleagues, and students of utopian folly. In the 1970s, though, Caldwell was a major figure in protest politics. He was chair of CND for two years, a leading voice in the anti-Vietnam war campaign, a regular contributor to Peace News, and a stalwart supporter of liberation movements in the developing world. He spoke at meetings all over the country, wrote books and articles, and engaged in public spats with such celebrated opponents as Bernard Levin.
The name of Kaing Guek Eav is, arguably, known by even fewer people, at least outside of Cambodia. Instead it is by his revolutionary pseudonym "Duch" that Kaing is usually referred to in the press. Duch is the only man ever to stand trial in a UN-sanctioned court for the mass murder perpetrated by the Cambodian communist party, or the Khmer Rouge, in the late 1970s. His trial on charges of crimes against humanity, grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions, and homicide and torture concerning thousands of victims, drew to a close in November. Justice has taken more than 30 years, but a verdict and sentence are expected sometime in the next few weeks.
Although their paths crossed only incidentally, the two men shared two main interests. They both had a pedagogic background: Caldwell was a history lecturer at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, while Duch, like many senior Khmer Rouge cadres, started out as a schoolteacher. And they both maintained an unbending belief in Saloth Sar, the leader of the Khmer Rouge revolution, who went under the Orwellian party title of Brother Number One, but was known more infamously to the world as Pol Pot. It was an ideological commitment that would shape the fate of both men and they held on to it right up until the moment of death – in Caldwell's case, his own, for Duch, the many thousands whose slaughter he organised.
In each circumstance, the question that reverberates down the years, growing louder rather than dimmer, is: why? Why were they in thrall to a system based on mass extermination? It's estimated that around two million Cambodians, more than a quarter of the population, lost their lives during the four catastrophic years of Khmer Rouge rule. What could have led these two individuals, worlds apart, to embrace a regime that has persuasive claim, in a viciously competitive field, to be the most monstrous of the 20th century? the article in The Guardian

An read in Public Affairs the account of the assasination of Prof. Caldwell by Elizabeth Becker
Elizabeth Becker, a correspondent for the Washington Post, is our last entry for him. Becker recounts their conversation the evening of his death: After dinner, Dudman went to his room to type up notes and Caldwell and I stayed at the table to have our last argument about Cambodia. Caldwell took what he considered the longer view and said the revolution was worth it. I said, on the contrary, I was more convinced of the truth of the refugee stories which is what I eventually wrote. That night Caldwell tried once more to get me to change my mind. He compared Cambodia to Scotland he was a Scottish nationalist and said Cambodia feared Vietnam the way Scotland feared the English. I saw no relevance to such a remark, and he retired to his room with the prophecy that Scotland would be independent of England by the middle of the 1980s. Later that December night, Caldwell was murdered by a Khmer Rouge assassin in a "plot meant to embarrass the regime on the eve of war." Becker adds that, "Circumstantial evidence inside the confessions [of the assassins] suggests that Caldwell was selected because he was the "friend" of the revolution.." Becker surmises that the assassination was planned by someone in the "inner party circle" opposed to Pol Pot. Also from confessions exacted from two men who were tortured at Tuol Sleng for the murder of Caldwell, Becker concludes in her Epilogue that "Caldwell's death would show that the revolution could not even care for its friends, that it was fraught with chaos.



Cambodia opposition silenced by the oppressive regime of Hun Sen:

A Cambodian court has convicted Mu Suh-Kwor, an opposition MP and rights activist for defaming Hun Sen, the prime minister. Her case is the latest in a series of lawsuits and arrests against opposition voices.
A Cambodian court has ordered an opposition member of parliament to pay $4,100 in damages after finding her guilty of defaming the country's prime minister. A municipal court in the capital Phnom Penh ruled on Tuesday that Mu Suh-Kwor of the Sam Rainsy Party had defamed Hun Sen when she tried to sue him over comments he allegedly made about her conduct during last year's election campaign. Critics have said the ruling reflected Hun Sen's determination to use Cambodia's courts to silence opposition critics. "That was not justice in the courtroom. It was totally political," Suh-Kwor told reporters, who were banned from attending the court session. "I will continue to fight until I get justice. Today, the court could have been a light for justice. The judge gave us darkness instead." ...
Suh-Kwor's case is the latest in a series of lawsuits and arrests targeting opposition voices. Hang Chkra, a newspaper editor is serving a one-year sentence in Phnom Penh for writing about alleged government corruption. In June Moeung Sonn, an opposition activist, fled the country after being given a two-year sentence for questioning a lighting system at the Angkor Wat temple complex, the country's biggest tourism drawcard. Another opposition newspaper shut down after 10 years of publishing to avoid government legal action. In June, the office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Cambodia and the New York-based Human Rights Watch criticised the lawsuits against the politicians. In a statement, the UN said the lawsuits undermined the constitutional freedom of opinion and expression. Human Rights Watch said that Hun Sen had "a long history of trying to muzzle Cambodia's political opposition and undermine the independence of the legal profession". Last month, the prime minister, a former Khmer Rouge fighter, criticised rights groups and foreign diplomats for interfering in Cambodia's internal affairs after they voiced concern about the removal of Suh-Kwor and Vann's parliamentary immunity.
...Steve Chao reports from Phnom Penh. ...more in Al Jazeera - Human Rights Watch - Le Figaro - Ka Set - Libération / and in the websites of Theary C. SENG and Mu SOCHUA


Khmer Rouge leader in dock as Cambodia genocide trial starts: Kaing Guek Eav, known as Duch, one of five to face war crimes charges before long-delayed UN-backed tribunal.

Hundreds of people, some of them survivors of the murderous Khmer Rouge, queued for hours today to see the opening of the first trial of the Cambodian regime's leaders. Kaing Guek Eav, 66, better known as Duch, sat in the dock behind a bullet-proof screen in a court that was purpose-built to house the UN-backed genocide trial. The regime's chief torturer had been driven in an armoured four-wheel drive vehicle from the villa where he is being held, for the historic trial which comes 30 years after the end of Pol Pot's brutal ultra-Maoist tyranny that left 1.7 million Cambodians dead. Duch is accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity for his role in the deaths of at least 12,380 prisoners at Phnom Penh's notorious Tuol Sleng torture centre. The opening days of the trial, however, will be taken up with procedural issues. ... more in Al Jazeera - The Guardian - France 24 - Le Figaro - El Mundo - El País

Country for Sale:
Cambodia - one of the world's poorest countries - could eventually earn enough from its oil, gas and minerals to become independent of foreign development aid. This report, Country for Sale, exposes for the first time how this future is being jeopardised by high level corruption and nepotism in the allocation and management of these critical public assets.
'Country for Sale' details how rights to exploit oil and mineral resources have been allocated behind closed doors by a small number of powerbrokers surrounding the prime minister and other senior officials. The beneficiaries of many of these deals are members of the ruling elite or their family members. Meanwhile, millions of dollars paid by oil and mining companies to secure access to these resources appear to be missing from the national accounts.
In the course of its investigation into Cambodia's oil, gas and mining sectors, Global Witness obtained a number of key documents. Global Witness believes that it is important that these documents, which include key regulations for the extractive industries are easily available in the public domain. the full report and investigations in Global Witness


Sam Raisy Party and Human Rights Party give birth to the Democratic Movement for Change: The idea of an alliance between the Sam Rainsy Party (SRP) and the Human Rights Party (HRP) in Cambodia slowly but surely reached the successful shores of completion. The presidents of both parties, Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha, signed on Thursday January 15th a common declaration officially establishing the “Democratic Movement for Change”, sealed with a frenetic handshake and a mutual smile. In Kem Sokha's own words, this “historic” moment was welcomed with profuse applause by elected representatives and campaigners from both opposition political formations gathered for the occasion at the SRP headquarters. From now on, the candidates will stand for election under one name but insisted their Movement was in no way the merging of their respective parties. When they registered their formations at the Cambodian National Election Committee (NEC) before the July 2008 legislative elections, the issue was raised. They eventually decided to stand for election as two different parties. After the July 27th 2008 elections, which confirmed the domination of Prime Minister Hun Sen's Cambodian People's Party (CPP) on the Cambodian political scene, SRP and HRP leaders, together with representatives of the FUNCINPEC and Norodom Ranariddh Party (NRP), presented a united front in their protest against the election results. A long crusade of denunciation ensued, but Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha soon found themselves alone in the equation and battling side by side for their common cause. Since then, they often aligned themselves with each other's ideas without however setting up any official rapprochement between their parties. On December 18th, Kem Sokha, back from a trip to North America, expressed his wish for the creation of the alliance they had mentioned many times before. The principle of the alliance seemed more or less established since on September 17th 2008, both parties had set up a technical committee in charge of laying the foundations for their union, composed of representatives from both formations. ...more in Ka-Set

Hundreds left homeless in Cambodia after forced eviction: Over 150 poor urban families were forcibly evicted from central Phnom Penh in Cambodia at the weekend. The vast majority of them have been left homeless. Cambodian security forces and demolition workers carried out the evictions of 152 families from Dey Kraham community in the early hours of Saturday. At around 3am, an estimated 250 police, military police and workers hired by the company claiming to own the land blocked access to the community before dispersing the population with tear gas and threats of violence. At 6am, excavators moved in and levelled the village. Some of the families were not able to retrieve belongings from their homes before the demolition. Officials from Phnom Penh municipality were present during the destruction. Amnesty International called on the Cambodian authorities to stop denying people the right to housing and to ensure adequate compensation and restitution for those evicted on Saturday. "The most urgent task now is for the government to immediately address the humanitarian needs of these people, who have lost their homes and face imminent food and water shortages," said Brittis Edman, Cambodia researcher for Amnesty International. "They will also need assistance for a long time to come." The Phnom Penh municipality has provided less than 30 of the 152 families with shelter at a designated resettlement site at Cham Chao commune in Dangkor district, some 16 kilometres from the city centre. Most of the other structures at the site are still under construction and lack roofs. There is no clean water, no electricity, sewage or basic services. Earlier, most of the affected community rejected being resettled there because it was too far from Phnom Penh, where they work, mostly as street vendors. Since the forced eviction, the Dey Kraham community has been told that the company, which is alleged to have purchased the land, has withdrawn earlier offers of compensation, leaving families who have been living in uncertainty and insecurity for more than two years, now faced with rebuilding their lives with nothing. ...more in Amnesty International

Anniversary of Khmer Rouge Fall: Thousands of Cambodians celebrated Wednesday the fall of the murderous Khmer Rouge regime 30 years ago as a UN-backed tribunal prepared to finally try some of its key leaders for crimes against humanity. More than 40,000 people packed Phnom Penh's Olympic Stadium for speeches and a parade to mark the day Vietnamese forces entered the capital to oust the ultra-communists from power. Despite the deaths of 1.7 million or more Cambodians during the Khmer Rouge's 1975-79 rule, none of the surviving leaders have yet faced justice. One of the accused—Kaing Guek Eav, better known as Duch, who headed the Khmer Rouge's largest torture center—is expected to take the stand in March, said co-prosecutor Robert Petit, adding that the trial is expected to take three to four months. But the other four, all of them aging and ailing, probably won't be tried until 2010 or later. Tribunal spokeswoman Helen Jarvis said Tuesday that they would hold a procedural meeting next week. Although this year's celebration—dubbed "Victory over Genocide"—was the largest ever, keynote speaker and Senate President Chea Sim made no mention of the tribunal. The Cambodian government, whose top leaders served in the Khmer Rouge ranks before defecting, has been accused of foot-dragging on the trial. "After 30 years, no one has been tried, convicted or sentenced for the crimes of one of the bloodiest regimes of the 20th century," the New York-based Human Rights Watch said in a release Monday. "This is no accident. For more than a decade, China and the United States blocked efforts at accountability, and for the past decade (Prime Minister) Hun Sen has done his best to thwart justice," it said. China was a key supporter of the Khmer Rouge and then the United States backed a post-1979 insurgency, which included Khmer Rouge guerrillas who fought the Vietnamese-installed government in Phnom Penh. The Khmer Rouge finally fell apart in 1998 after the death of its leader Pol Pot. Chea Sim said that the legacy of the Khmer Rouge era has yet to be erased in Cambodia, where peace, nonviolence and a sense of self-confidence were still needed. He also noted that 30 percent of the people were still living below the poverty line. ...more in The Irrawaddy - Le Figaro - Human Rights Watch

Phnom Penh's totem elephant – Sambo – and his friend Sin Son survivor of the Khmer Rouge: The speckle-eared pachyderm escaped machetes and famine, and now rests as Phnom Penh's totem of good things.
In the center of a traffic-mobbed roundabout, encircled by the crush of cars and motorbikes, a small act of veneration regularly takes place. A small gray-haired woman buys a bunch of bananas and toddles with her cane up to Sambo, a 10-foot-tall, 4,000-pound elephant standing calmly in the urban chaos.
Sambo grasps the offering with her trunk, gobbling the entire bunch in one bite as the woman brings her palms together in a sign of respect for the last remaining elephant in Phnom Penh. Once plentiful in the Cambodian countryside, elephants like Sambo were historically fixtures at the royal palace. While the animals still evoke the nation's ancient legacy of kings and warriors, Sambo also represents a more recent piece of Cambodian history. Having survived the machetes of the Khmer Rouge she has become one of the capital city's most visible cultural icons – a magnet for tourists, children, and those who venerate her as a sacred beast.
... For Sin Son, a fourth-generation elephant handler, Sambo is a beloved link to life before the Khmer Rouge regime: "For me, elephants represent God – they represent people who have been saved, who have lived a long time."
...Cambodia's Khmer Rouge was responsible for the deaths of an estimated two million people from 1975-79, and millions more were left with deep mental and physical scars. Sin Son was one of them. He lost several of his relatives in the mass slaughter but one very special companion, an elephant named Sambo, survived. Sin Son told Al Jazeera of his reunion with his childhood friend after many years apart.
...more in The Christian Science Monitor and in Al Jazeera

Policías camboyanos detienen al ex ministro de Exteriores del Jemer Rojo y su mujer que fue Ministra de Asuntos Sociales durante el genocidio: Ieng Sary, ex ministro de Exteriores de la dictadura genocida del Jemer Rojo, y su esposa Ieng Thirith, ex ministra de Asuntos Sociales, han sido detenidos por la policía en su mansión de Phnom Penh, la capital de Camboya. En la operación también han participado representantes de Naciones Unidas en el tribunal que tiene previsto juzgar a los líderes vivos del régimen que asesinó a más de 1,7 millones de personas. Sus trabajos comenzaron en octubre pasado cuando citó a sus tres primeros testigos, todos pasaron por el centro de torturas de Toul Sleng. Ieng Sary y su esposa Ieng Thirith, ex ministro de Exteriores y ex ministra de Asuntos Sociales del régimen de Camboya, han sido detenidos por la Policía. La operación contó con la presencia de representantes de la ONU en el tribunal internacional encargado de juzgar a los líderes vivos del grupo maoísta. Según indicó la Policía, la pareja fue conducida de su mansión a la s oficinas del tribunal patrocinado por Naciones Unidas, aunque de momento no se han emitido cargos contra ellos. Ieng Thirith es hermana de Khieu Ponnary, la mujer de Pol Pot, el máximo líder del Jemer Rojo, o "hermano número uno", fallecido en 1998 y cabeza del régimen que asesinó a 1,7 millones de personas tras el golpe de Estado de 1975. Ieng Thirith recibió un perdón real en 1996 después de que encabezara una rendición masiva de miembros del Jemer Rojo levantados en armas. Con esa acción se puso fin a casi treinta años de guerra civil. En octubre pasado, el tribunal internacional comenzó sus actividades para juzgar a antiguos dirigentes del Jemer Rojo por genocidio y otros crímenes citó a sus primero tres testigos, todos ellos personas que trabajaron o pasaron por el centro de torturas de Toul Sleng. La ONU participa en la organización y celebración de este juicio en Phnom Penh, que cuenta con un presupuesto de unos 56 millones de dólares, que sufraga en su mayor parte la comunidad internacional. Uno de los últimos acusados es Nuon Chea, el "hermano número dos" y considerado el ideólogo del Jemer Rojo, uno de los pocos dirigentes de la organización que quedan con vida. ...más Libertad Digital - El País

Current time in Phnom Penh -

"All that we are is the result of what we have thought. If a man speaks or acts with an evil thought, pain follows him. If a man speaks or acts with a pure thought, happiness follows him, like a shadow that never leaves him."
"Better than a thousand hollow words, is one word that brings peace. "
"Even death is not to be feared by one who has lived wisely."
"Hatred does not cease by hatred, but only by love; this is the eternal rule."

noticias : ASIA :: CAMBOYA


Corruption and violent land grab leaving thousands homeless

...a country seemingly up for sale. Investors are flooding an unregulated property market, driving tens of thousands from their homes.
...more in Al Jazeera's "101 East"

New Cambodia Laws May Curb NGO Activity

Cambodia could be the latest Asian country to adopt tighter laws governing the activities of local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs)—a move many believe will put further pressure on the country’s already fragile democratic space. Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen foreshadowed the move after the July national election in which his Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) was returned with a significantly increased majority. In a five-hour speech late September, Hun Sen said the law was necessary to track the funding sources of NGOs, as "he feared terrorists might settle in the kingdom under the guise of NGOs". The Prime Minister, who has had a fractious relationship with some local and international NGOs, also said: "NGOs are out of control...they insult the government just to ensure their financial survival." He said the law is one of three priority pieces of legislation for the government’s current five-year term, along with a new penal code and a much-anticipated anti-corruption law delayed since the 1990s. Officials from the interior ministry, which has carriage for the law, have claimed it will address ‘serious irregularities’ such as NGOs setting up to exploit tax loopholes and their involvement in party politics, although no concrete evidence has been provided to support either claim. Debate over the proposed law is muted due to the fact its content remains unknown. Little information has been made public, unlike the government’s previous attempts to introduce laws governing NGOs, when drafts were either released for comment or leaked to the media. And although interior ministry officials have committed to public consultation, they have not said when the proposed legislation will be made available. ..."They don’t care about financial management or governance structure what they want to do is control the voice of NGOs," he said, echoing the opinion of many in the sector. Many believe the law will squeeze democratic space in Cambodia, a trend some say is already underway post the July election, which left the opposition weakened and the ruling CPP in control of both houses of parliament. ...more in The Irrawaddy

Is Foreign Aid helping the victims and advancing Democracy or supporting a corrupt dictorship-like regime?:

...more in Al Jazeera's "101 East"

Le génocide de la dictature des Khmers rouges, un autre procès qui s’enlise par des intérêts obscènes: Trente ans après le génocide de près de deux millions de Cambodgiens, cinq complices de Pol Pot répondent enfin de leur crimes. Dans ce Reporter, notre correspondant Cyril Payen nous emmène dans les coulisses d’un tribunal très critiqué. Cliquez sur la vidéo à droite de la page pour regarder le débat de FRANCE 24 sur le procès des Khmers rouge. Le procès des Khmers rouges aura-t-il lieu ? Établi en 2006, le tribunal spécial doit juger les crimes contre l’humanité commis par les Khmers rouges, des ultra-maoïstes accusés d’avoir mis à mort environ 2 millions de personnes entre 1975 et 1979. De vice de procédure en manœuvres dilatoires, le temps passe sans que les cinq accusés, désormais très âgés, n'aient encore eu à se justifier devant leur pays et la communauté internationale de la barbarie des faits qui leur sont reprochés. Cyril Payen a suivi les acteurs de ce procès. Un reportage spécial diffusé dans le cadre de l’émission Reporters. L’avocat français Jacques Vergès défend gratuitement l’ancien haut responsable khmer Khieu Samphan, qu’il a connu dans sa jeunesse à Paris. En coulisses d’un débat spécial organisé par France 24, il remet en cause ce tribunal parrainé par l’ONU. "Le fond de l’affaire, c’est que ce tribunal, aujourd’hui, n’est pas en position de juger." Khieu Samphan conteste avoir eu connaissance des crimes qui lui sont reprochés. Pourtant, dans une thèse présentée en 1959 à la Sorbonne, Khieu Samphan, un proche du leader Pol Pot, accusait les anciens pouvoirs coloniaux, les élites cambodgiennes et les propriétaires terriens d’êtres responsables de la misère des paysans. A en croire des historiens tels que François Debré, cette thèse contient les lignes directrices de la révolution appliquées par les Khmers rouges. Vergès répond. ...voir le reportage dans France 24

July / Julio

Cambodian journalist, critic of the nepotist and corrupt regime, was murdered with his son ahead of national elections: Khem Sambo, 47, reported on corruption, illegal logging and land grabbing by powerful government figures for a newspaper linked to the opposition Sam Rainsy Party. He was shot with his 21-year-old son by assassins on a motorcycle as they travelled by motorcycle in the capital, Phnom Penh, on Friday. Earlier in the day Khem Sambo had been working on a story involving government land concessions to a private company. As she burnt their bodies at a Buddhist temple in the city the grieving mother and widow, Lay Heang, 46, wept and pleaded "Please, catch those murderers and find justice for my husband and son." Lay Heang said that at first she did not realise that her son had also been hit. "He called his younger brother to say 'father was shot'," she said. "I tried to call him back but I could not get through. I was hoping to see a bright future for him." On July 27, Cambodians vote in a general election expected return Prime Minister Hun Sen to power, who was a member of the Khmer Rouges atrocious dictatorship.

He has ruled Cambodia since 1985. Critics call Hun Sen a dictator who has crushed the opposition and plundered the country. ...more in The Telegraph - The Guardian - Reporteros sin Fronteras - International Herald Tribune - Voice of America - The Seattle Times - AOL News - Yahoo News - - Tapei News - The Australian - Inquirer - The Phnom Penh Post - Read the reportage on Hun Sen - who was a member of the Khmer Rouges and appointed minister of Foreing Affairs by Vietnam in 1979- in the BBC
And in the Asia Human Rights Commission - Human Rights abuses in Cambodia - About the parties in this election read The Irrawaddy - Human Rights Party recently founded by Kem Sokha - Watch a document Democracy Endangered by corruption in JourneyMan Pictures and a recent interview to the corrrupt Prime Minister Hun Sen by Al Jazeera - Visit also the web of The Center for Social Development

Junio / June

Encarcelado el director de un diario camboyano crítico con el Gobierno corrupto y autoritario de Hun Sen:

Un tribunal de Justicia de Camboya ordenó encarcelar al director del diario 'Moneaksekar Khmer', crítico con el Gobierno, tras ser acusado de difamación y publicar información falsa, indicaron fuentes oficiales. Dam Sith, a su vez destacado miembro del partido opositor 'Sam Rainsy', ingresó en la prisión de Phnom Penh, la capital, dos días después de que fuera detenido por orden judicial al considerar que era una "amenaza" contra los testigos llamados a declarar durante el juicio al que será sometido por un delito de difamación. El periodista está acusado formalmente de publicar en el diario que dirige un artículo mediante el que supuestamente se difamaba al viceprimer ministro y ministro de Asuntos Exteriores, Hor Namhong. La detención de Sith, que ha sido denunciada por la Alianza de la Prensa del Sudeste Asiático y el Club de Periodistas Camboyanos, se produce cuando se aproximan las elecciones legislativas, previstas para el próximo 27 de julio y en las que el gobernante Partido del Pueblo de Camboya (PPC), confía en conseguir una abultada victoria. ...publicado en El Mundo - BBC

Avril / April / Abril

Vergès questionne le procès d'un dirigent des Khmers rouges:

L'avocat français a claqué la porte du tribunal de Phnom Penh, mercredi, se déclarant dans l'impossibilité de défendre l'ancien président Khieu Samphan. Les séances du Tribunal spécial chargé de juger les anciens dirigeants khmers rouges à Phnom Penh ne manquent pas de piment. Pour la deuxième fois, l'avocat français Jacques Vergès a claqué la porte, mercredi. Apparemment ulcéré, il a quitté l'audience au cours de laquelle il devait demander la mise en liberté de Khieu Samphan, l'ex- président du Kampuchéa démocratique, le régime khmer rouge responsable de la mort de 2 millions de Cambodgiens entre 1975 et 1979. Le tribunal, qui est placé sous l'égide des Nations unies, aurait, selon lui, demandé à son client de changer d'avocat. Dans une colère tonitruante, Me Vergès a hurlé qu'il était indigné que sa robe soit traitée de ­cette manière. La séance a été suspendue, l'audience reportée sine die et l'avocat doit quitter le Cambodge jeudi. En février, Me Vergès était déjà parti précipitamment pour dé­non­cer l'intervention des parties civiles pendant les audiences pu­bliques avant procès. Et il déplorait que 16 000 pages de l'acte d'accusation de Khieu Samphan, qui est inculpé de crimes de guerre et de crimes contre l'humanité, n'aient été traduites ni en français, ni en khmer (langues de travail, avec l'anglais, du tribunal). La traduction n'ayant pas progressé plus de deux mois plus tard, il s'est déclaré «incapable de savoir ce que l'on reproche à (son) client».

Le tribunal a décidé de délivrer un avertissement à Jacques Vergès, en raison de son comportement. «Derrière cette sortie théâtrale, Vergès exulte, estime un proche du dossier. Il va finir par faire libérer Khieu Samphan pour vice de procédure.» Mieux, ses apparitions à éclipses à Phnom Penh ne manqueront pas d'épaissir le mystère entourant l'avocat et les huit années (de 1970 à 1978) pendant lesquelles il s'est volati­lisé. Une des hypothèses suggère qu'il faisait le coup de feu aux côtés des Khmers rouges. Jacques Vergès, 83 ans, et Khieu Samphan, 76 ans, se sont connus dans les années 1950 à Paris, où ils fréquentaient les mêmes cercles marxistes du mouvement anticolonialiste. Khieu Samphan, qui préparait une thèse à la Sorbonne sur «l'économie du Cambodge et ses problèmes d'in­dustrialisation», évoque avec nostalgie le temps où ils étaient «tous les deux transportés par les idéaux, la fraternité et le tourbillon des manifestations». dans Le Figaro -

Enero / January

Cambodian police blocked Mia Farrow and other citizens from holding a genocide memorial ceremony at a Khmer Rouge prison: at one point forcefully pushing her group away from a barricade. Farrow, who is working with the U.S.-based advocacy group Dream for Darfur, was in Cambodia as part of a seven-nation tour of countries that have suffered genocide to call attention to the humanitarian crisis in Sudan. "My heart -- our hearts -- are breaking for what happened in Cambodia today, especially for the survivors of genocide," Farrow told a news conference after the confrontation with police. ...Beijing's tough approach illustrates its extreme sensitivity toward anything that might tarnish its staging of the Aug. 8-24 Olympic Games. Beijing has invested billions of dollars and national prestige in what it hopes will be a glorious showcase of China's rapid development from impoverished agrarian nation to rising industrial power. A tide of criticism from rights groups, celebrities and international media threatens to dampen the mood surrounding the games. On Sunday, actress Mia Farrow received widespread publicity with an attempt to stage a protest at a former Khmer Rouge prison in Cambodia over Chinese support for Sudan. Farrow has been working with the U.S.-based advocacy group Dream for Darfur, which has held mock Olympic-style torch-lighting ceremonies in places around the globe that have suffered mass killings to call attention to the Darfur violence. China has sold weapons to the Sudanese government and defended Khartoum in the U.N. Security Council. Resource-hungry China buys two-thirds of Sudan's oil exports and observers say Sudan's military receives up to 70 percent of oil royalties. China says it plays a constructive role in seeking to resolve the Darfur conflict, where more than 200,000 people have died since 2003, when local rebels took up arms against the Arab-dominated Sudanese government. ...more in - The Washington Post / And in the website of A Dream for Darfour


When would be Justice for the Victims of the Khmer Rouge genocide?:

...With the trial of some of the leaders of Cambodia's Khmer Rouge nearing, 101 East talks to some of their victims.
...more in Al Jazeera's "101 East"

Arrestado el ex presidente de Camboya durante el régimen de los Jemeres Rojos : Khieu Samphan, que gobernó durante cuatro años, será juzgado con cuatro jemeres rojos más ante un tribunal internacional. El ex presidente de Camboya durante el régimen de los Jemeres Rojos, Khieu Sampan, ha sido detenido hoy por la Policía por su implicación en el genocidio que acabó con la vida de al menos dos millones de personas a causa de la hambruna, las enfermedades y las purgas ordenadas por la cúpula de los Jemeres Rojos. Los agentes detuvieron a Sampan a la salida del hospital en el que ingresó el pasado miércoles, tras sufrir un infarto, y que abandonó escoltado por las fuerzas de seguridad y con las manos en alto antes de ser introducido en un furgón blindado, han informado fuentes médicas y policiales.

Sampan fue jefe del Estado e imagen pública del régimen desde 1975 a 1979, y siempre ha asegurado que él nunca tuvo nada que ver con los órganos represores. Será juzgado por el tribunal internacional junto a otros cuatro jemeres rojos vinculados con la cúpula del grupo extremista y presumiblemente será acusado de crímenes contra la humanidad ante el tribunal que cuenta con jueces camboyanos y auspiciado por Naciones Unidas, organismo encargado de juzgar las atrocidades cometidas por el grupo maoísta durante casi cuatro años. ...más en El País

La confesión del carcelero Hin Huy verdugo del genocidio camboyano: ... rememora la barbarie de los jemeres rojos... Los cadáveres de cientos de miles abonaban los arrozales de Camboya cuando el carcelero Hin Huy llegó a los campos de la muerte de Choeung Ek con otro camión de presos. El pelotón a sus órdenes los empujó hasta el borde de unas fosas que fueron su sepultura. Verdugos con barras de hierro y machetes les destrozaron el cráneo y después les degollaron. Murieron esposados y de rodillas, uno a uno, sin saber por qué, torturados hasta confesarse espías de la CIA o de la KGB, imperialistas, burgueses, traidores al partido, intelectuales, o enemigos del régimen de Pol Pot (1975-79). Los lugartenientes de aquel lunático serán juzgados en los próximos meses por un tribunal internacional auspiciado por la ONU. Aquel maoísmo extremo, agrarista y xenófobo se cobró la vida de 1,7 millones de personas. El campesino Hin Huy, entonces de 25 años, fue destinado al S-11, una escuela reconvertida en el principal centro de tortura del Partido Comunista de Kampuchea -nombre dado por los jemeres rojos a Camboya- (PCK), hoy visitado por turistas que se espantan con el relato de los guías: "Si negaban las acusaciones, les seguían torturando; si las admitían, eran ejecutados". Las celdas conservan las cadenas, grilletes y fotos de los supliciados. El retrato de una madre y su hijo de meses en brazos conmueve a una turista francesa: "¿Cómo es posible que el ser humano cometa estos crímenes?". El sexto mandamiento del régimen interno decía: "Prohibido gritar mientras se le aplican latigazos o descargas eléctricas". Un guardia martirizó a una adolescente hasta lograr que se confesara agente de la CIA con órdenes de defecar en los cultivos. Las palizas eran mortales: "Ejecuté las instrucciones de Ta Chey [secretario regional del partido] arrestando a Khleng y llevándolo al centro de interrogatorio, donde murió", según consta en las anotaciones personales del interrogador Moeng Teng. "Después detuve a Chantha, y lo golpeé para que confesara que era espía. No lo hizo, y Ta Chey me indicó que lo golpeara más, y también murió". Los reos llegaban condenados: "¡Traidor! ¿Cuándo entraste en la CIA? ¿Quién te reclutó para el KGB?". La meta es obtener el mayor número de confesiones, entre el 70% y el 80%, según la documentación del Centro de Documentación de Camboya, que jugará un papel relevante en el juicio. ...lea el reportaje en diario El País

Pulse las 5 pantallas sucesivamente para ver el documental (en inglés) de cómo Vietnam, aunque comunista, liberó en 1979 Cambodia del terror de los Jemeres Rojos (comunistas):

Tres meses en el horror de los jemeres rojos:
[2 millones de personas torturadas y asesinadas por la feroz dictadura de los jemeres rojos de totalitorio Pol Pot en nombre del "comunismo" de 1975 a 1979]
François Bizot, especialista en budismo 'khmer', cuenta cómo en 1971 cayó en una emboscada. Para mí siempre fue Bizot a secas. No supe su nombre de pila hasta hace 10 años cuando se casó con una bonita francesa que, ante mi asombro, le llamaba Françoise. Para el resto de nosotros sigue siendo Bizot, investigador, hombre del Renacimiento, héroe a la fuerza, con andadura de héroe, cabeza de poeta, insaciable pasión por la vida y la misión fáustica de descubrir lo que esconde en lo más íntimo de sí misma. Lo conocí un atardecer en Chiang Mai, al norte de Tailandia, a través de un amigo común, en la preciosa casa de madera que él mismo había diseñado, rodeada de árboles enormes habitados por gibones. Uno de ellos, un ejemplar en verdad imponente, había elegido la copa del árbol más grande para encaramarse y allí estaba masturbándose, meditabundo, de perfil, dando la espalda al sol poniente, mientras bebíamos nuestros whiskys. La guerra de Camboya no había terminado ni mucho menos, pero los norteamericanos habían abandonado la zona. El despiadado ejército de Pol Pot estaba instalado en Phnom Penh y los suplicios de Bizot habían quedado atrás. Hacía ocasionales referencias a ellos de refilón, escalando el muro de su reticencia. Las provocaba nuestra común amiga Yvette Pierpaoli -ahora muerta-, que conoció a Bizot en Phnom Penh, antes que yo. Cuando había estado en Phnom Penh dos años atrás, Bizot estaba en su pueblo, en el centro del emplazamiento de Angkor, donde empieza su historia. En Phnom Penh no era más que un vago personaje legendario acogido, cuidado y adorado por Yvette. De modo que no puedo comparar al perturbado e inestable Bizot que conocí con el despreocupado Bizot que por lo visto era antes de las experiencias que cuenta. Apenas puedo imaginar cuál de las finas arrugas alrededor de la boca y de los ojos, qué surcos de las mejillas y de la frente, qué expresión desesperada de la mano o de los ojos están grabados ahí por la agonía física y espiritual de su proceso, por su entereza frente a Douch durante los interrogatorios. Bizot tiene la autoridad que da el dolor. ...más en diario El País

Pulse las pantallas para ver y escuchar una entrevista a genocida Pol Pot. Seguido de otros dos vídeos sobre los crímenes de esa atroz dictadura contra ciudadanos educados e intelectuales, acusados perversamente de ser "enemigos del pueblo"

Leer también:
Muere Ta Mok, ‘el carnicero’ del régimen de los Jemeres Rojos: El líder del movimiento Jemer Rojo, Ta Mok, responsable de la muerte de cerca de dos millones de personas, falleció ayer (21 julio 2006) en un hospital de la capital de Camboya. La muerte del general, apodado ‘el carnicero’, se produjo antes de que fuera juzgado por un tribunal internacional por crímenes contra la humanidad. ...más en diarios Las Provincias - El Mundo - y el artículo de Roger Casas en Pensamiento Crítico


Secret Bombing Of Cambodia by Nixon and Kissinger: In the fall of 2000, twenty-five years after the end of the war in Indochina, Bill Clinton became the first US president since Richard Nixon to visit Vietnam. While media coverage of the trip was dominated by talk of some two thousand US soldiers still classified as missing in action, a small act of great historical importance went almost unnoticed. As a humanitarian gesture, Clinton released extensive Air Force data on all American bombings of Indochina between 1964 and 1975. Recorded using a groundbreaking IBM-designed system, the database provided extensive information on sorties conducted over Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. Clinton's gift was intended to assist in the search for unexploded ordnance left behind during the carpet bombing of the region. Littering the countryside, often submerged under farmland, this ordnance remains a significant humanitarian concern. It has maimed and killed farmers, and rendered valuable land all but unusable. Development and de-mining organizations have put the Air Force data to good use over the past six years, but have done so without noting its full implications, which turn out to be staggering.
The Bombing Database
The still-incomplete database (it has several "dark" periods) reveals that from October 4, 1965, to August 15, 1973, the United States dropped far more ordnance on Cambodia than was previously believed: 2,756,941 tons' worth, dropped in 230,516 sorties on 113,716 sites. Just over 10 percent of this bombing was indiscriminate, with 3,580 of the sites listed as having "unknown" targets and another 8,238 sites having no target listed at all. Even if the latter may arguably be oversights, the former suggest explicit knowledge of indiscretion. The database also shows that the bombing began four years earlier than is widely believed -- not under Nixon, but under Lyndon Johnson. The impact of this bombing, the subject of much debate for the past three decades, is now clearer than ever. Civilian casualties in Cambodia drove an enraged populace into the arms of an insurgency that had enjoyed relatively little support until the bombing began, setting in motion the expansion of the Vietnam War deeper into Cambodia, a coup d'état in 1970, the rapid rise of the Khmer Rouge, and ultimately the Cambodian genocide. The data demonstrates that the way a country chooses to exit a conflict can have disastrous consequences. It therefore speaks to contemporary warfare as well, including US operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. Despite many differences, a critical similarity links the war in Iraq with the Cambodian conflict: an increasing reliance on air power to battle a heterogeneous, volatile insurgency.

To promote Justice and Democracy in Cambodia, please support:

Fight for justice, as the evil legacy of the Khemer Rouges dictatorship goes on today:

Al Jazeera's "101 East" looks at one of the most enduring legacies of Khmer Rouge rule in Cambodia -- the absence of the rule of law. ...more in Al Jazeera

Angkor Wat
documentary by the BBC

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English version from Babelfish.