Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Post reporter wins international honour

Post reporter wins international honour

Post reporter wins international honour

Veteran Post reporter Thet Sambath yesterday won a prestigious international journalism award for his ground-breaking documentary Enemies of the People, which unearthed new truths about the Khmer Rouge.

The International Centre for Journalists called Thet Sambath’s film “arguably the most important documentary about the Khmer Rouge” in a statement released yesterday announcing the winners of the 2011 Knight International Journalism Award.

Two Mexican reporters – Rocío Idalia Gallegos Rodríguez and Sandra Rodríguez Nieto – who investigated violent drug cartels also earned the prize.

The award “recognises media professionals worldwide who have taken bold steps to keep citizens informed despite great obstacles”.

The winners, who were nominated by seasoned journalists and Knight International Journalism Fellows, have been invited to a ceremony in Washington, DC.

Theth Sambath said yesterday he was surprised and honoured by the award’s recognition for his work.

“I never believed I would get this award,” he said.

“Before, I felt disappointed when I worked for many years – my story did not get out.”

Thet Sambath, who lost his parents and brother during the rule of Pol Pot, embarked on a decade-long quest to learn how his family, and perhaps as many as two million other Cambodians, died.

He said it took him four or five years before he earned the trust of Khmer Rouge Brother No. 2 Nuon Chea, who later gave an extraordinary confession on film.

Thet Sambath turned his interviews with Nuon Chea and lower-level cadres into a documentary with British filmmaker Rob Lemkin.

The film was short-listed for an Oscar this year, and won the Special Jury Prize for World Documentary at the 2010 Sundance festival.

Enemies of the People would  be released on DVD in the United States on October 1, Thet Sambath said.

He is now working with Lemkin on a sequel, which he hopes will be finished at the end of 2012.

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