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Khmer Rouge court vows 'fair and just' verdict

Cambodia's UN-backed war crimes court Thursday promised a "fair and just" verdict in the trial of the Khmer Rouge Khmer Rouge (kəmĕr` rzh), name given to native Cambodian Communists. Khmer Rouge soldiers, aided by North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops, began a large-scale insurgency against  prison chief, after days of emotional testimony from the relatives of victims.

Jail supremo su·pre·mo  
n. pl. su·pre·mos Chiefly British
One who is highest in authority or command, as of an organization.



[Spanish and Italian, supreme, supremo, from Latin
 Duch, 66, is on trial for overseeing the torture and execution of roughly 15,000 people at the notorious Tuol Sleng detention centre detention centre
Noun

a place where young people may be detained for short periods of time by order of a court

Noun 1. detention centre
 during the hardline communist regime's 1975-79 rule.

Several foreigners and Cambodians have come to the court in recent weeks to testify about the effects on their lives of losing loved ones loved ones nplseres mpl queridos

loved ones nplproches mpl et amis chers

loved ones love npl
 in the "hell" of the high school-turned-prison.

Head judge Nil Nonn warned them on Thursday to only give evidence and not to use the hearing "to take revenge", after some witnesses spoke out harshly against Duch.

"At the end, the chamber would consider all this information and evidence, and then we would issue a judgement which is fair and just and is acceptable by all the parties to the proceedings," Nil Nonn added.

New Zealand New Zealand (zē`lənd), island country (2005 est. pop. 4,035,000), 104,454 sq mi (270,534 sq km), in the S Pacific Ocean, over 1,000 mi (1,600 km) SE of Australia. The capital is Wellington; the largest city and leading port is Auckland.  Olympic rower Rob Hamill, whose brother Kerry was murdered by the Khmer Rouge after his yacht was blown off course and into Cambodian waters, told the court on Monday how he had sometimes felt like killing Duch himself.

Court officials have said Duch's trial is expected to wrap up in October, with the judges likely to issue a verdict some months later.

Duch, a former maths teacher whose real name is Kaing Guek Eav, has previously accepted responsibility for his role in governing the jail under the regime and begged forgiveness from the families of the victims.

The jail chief last week asked for the "strictest level of punishment" -- even death by stoning -- for his crimes against the Cambodian people.

But he has denied that he played a leading role in the Khmer Rouge's hierarchy, saying that he obeyed orders from the top because he feared for his own and his family's lives.

Led by Pol Pot Pol Pot, 1925–98, Cambodian political leader, originally named Saloth Sar. Paris-educated, and a Khmer Communist leader from 1960, he led Khmer Rouge guerrillas against the government of Lon Nol after 1970. , who died in 1998, the Khmer Rouge emptied Cambodia's cities in a bid to forge an agrarian utopia, resulting in the deaths of up to two million people from starvation, overwork overwork

the condition produced by working a draft animal or working dog, an eventing or endurance horse too hard. See also exhaustion.
 and torture.
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Author:AFP
Publication:AFP Asian Edition
Date:Aug 20, 2009
Words:353
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