Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Brother No 2 denies role in mass killings

Brother No 2 denies role in mass killings

Brother No 2 denies role in mass killings

090722_06pp

THIS WEEK IN HISTORY
Vol. 10, No.15
July 20th - August 2nd, 2001

FACED with new evidence of his complicity in crimes against humanity, former Khmer Rouge Brother No 2 Nuon Chea dismissed the allegations as "fabricated", declared he had no regrets for fulfilling his "duty for the nation", and asked with a laugh: "Do I look like a killer?"

Nuon Chea, one of seven former high-ranking officials singled out in a new report as prime candidates for prosecution for crimes against humanity, greeted the news with a response typical of former top Khmer Rouge leaders: total denial.

"Any people can produce such documents afterwards [to defame the Khmer Rouge]," Nuon Chea argued when excerpts of documents quoted in the report were read to him. "I admit some people were killed, but not millions. They died from starvation and illness."

He said the Khmer Rouge provided workers with "rice three times a day and dessert once a week".

After obtaining a copy of the report, titled "Seven Candidates for Prosecution: Accountability for the Crimes of the Khmer Rouge," the Post tried to interview the men listed by the authors as responsible for crimes against humanity.

Nuon Chea received the Post in his house in the former Khmer Rouge stronghold in Pailin. He spoke at length but admitted nothing.

Two others identified in the report, former Northern Zone Secretary Ke Pauk and Meas Muth, an army divisional commander, echoed Nuon Chea's denials of personal responsibility for torture and killings committed during the Democratic Kampuchea regime.

In Siem Reap, Ke Pauk angrily dismissed the report as "fiction", while Meas Muth in Phnom Penh said that "low-ranking officials" like himself were not to blame.

Using documents discovered in the past three years by the Documentation Center of Cambodia, researcher Steve Heder and international lawyer Brian Tittemore described the involvement of all seven men in mass killings during the regime.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • Rainsy and Sokha ‘would already be dead’: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday appeared to suggest he would have assassinated opposition leaders Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha had he known they were promising to “organise a new government” in the aftermath of the disputed 2013 national elections. In a clip from his speech

  • Massive ceremony at Angkor Wat will show ‘Cambodia not in anarchy’: PM

    Government officials, thousands of monks and Prime Minister Hun Sen himself will hold a massive prayer ceremony at Angkor Wat in early December to highlight the Kingdom’s continuing “peace, independence and political stability”, a spectacle observers said was designed to disguise the deterioration of

  • PM tells workers CNRP is to blame for any sanctions

    In a speech to workers yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen pinned the blame for any damage inflicted on Cambodia’s garment industry by potential economic sanctions squarely on the opposition party. “You must remember clearly that if the purchase orders are reduced, it is all