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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Party lines, knowledge probed at KRT hearing

Party lines, knowledge probed at KRT hearing

The 200th trial day of Case 002 kicked off yesterday with prosecutors continuing to present documents allegedly linking Khmer Rouge leaders Khieu Samphan and Nuon Chea to a senior party line that would make them prosecutable for crimes committed under a “common purpose”.

A September 1977 telegram from the north zone secretary to committee 870 – widely understood to include the uppermost leaders of the regime – hints at the purge of former officials of the Lon Nol republic.

“We have uncovered many enemies who are burrowing from within, either from the spying of their anti-revolutionary activities or through implication.”

A March 1978 telegram is more blunt: “In the dry season the remaining enemies reemerged . . . we systematically purged them.”

The issue of forced marriage was also examined, with Democratic Kampuchea era publications read out by the prosecution. “Revolutionary youth must be really vigilant in selecting our spouses . . . it is imperative to be vigilant in regard to sexual morals . . . do not choose recklessly all over the place,” one article said.

With the trial chamber earlier this week allowing defence teams to raise objections on the admissibility of documentary evidence for the first time, both counsels voiced concerns that civil party documents were moving beyond the sub-trial’s scope.

“We are in a very subtle manner sliding towards another case,” said Khieu Samphan co-lawyer Anta Guisse, who claimed that by discussing policy implementation on the ground, the scope of the case was inevitably widening.

“For us there is no fair trial if we are going to stray from the context of case 002/01 and talk about what should come under the subsequent trial segments,” she said.

Chamber president Nil Nonn dismissed her continued objections.



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