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Detained Khmer Rouge military leader hospitalized.

PHNOM PENH, June 29 Kyodo

Detained Khmer Rouge military leader Ta Mok was sent to a military hospital on Thursday after his health condition worsened, his lawyer told Kyodo News.

Benson Samay said that his client was sent to Preah Ketomealea Hospital to be treated for high blood pressure, a stomachache and respiratory problems.

A medical doctor at the hospital confirmed Ta Mok's presence, adding that Ta Mok was not able to walk.

Ta Mok, 81, has been detained in a military prison in Phnom Penh since he was captured in 1999 in Anlong Veng, a former Khmer Rouge stronghold near the Thai border.

Khmer Rouge leaders are blamed for the deaths of at least 1.7 million Cambodians in the late 1970s.

Besides Ta Mok, only one other senior Khmer Rouge leader -- Kaing Gech Ieu, better known as Duch, who ran a torture center in Phnom Penh -- is in custody.

Three other surviving leaders -- Ieng Sary, Khieu Samphan and Nuon Chea -- are living freely in Cambodia.

Commenting on Ta Mok's worsening health, Reach Sambath, spokesman for a planned Khmer Rouge trail, said, ''We understand that all former Khmer Rouge leaders are getting old and thus we are trying to speed up our process as quickly as possible.''

While no date has yet been set, both Cambodia and the United Nations have stated that the trial will take place sometimes in the middle of next year.
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Publication:Asian Political News
Date:Jul 3, 2006
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