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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Trial meeting begins for Tuol Sleng chief

Trial meeting begins for Tuol Sleng chief

THE Khmer Rouge tribunal on Thursday finished the first of two private preparatory meetings that will evaluate logistics and set a date for its first trial, that of S-21 prison chief Kaing Guek Eav, expected in March.

The talks involved all parties, including the ailing 66-year-old former cadre, and represented the conclusion of the pretrial stage of the tribunal, as well as dealing with logistical concerns leading up to the initial public hearing.

Court spokesman Reach Sambath said the talks had so far allowed parties to voice their concerns about the trial and would aim at resolving issues and setting an exact date for the trial when they concluded today.

"Judges of the Trial Chamber called all parties together, including Duch, to listen to each other about the proceeding of the upcoming trial," he told the Post Thursday.

"Each party had the opportunity to bring up logistical issues of concern to them, including translation, witness and audiovisual-related issues," he added.

Witnesses unconfirmed

He declined to say whether the number of witnesses was confirmed but said that the witnesses - likely survivors of the torture centre and former prison guards - were also present at the meeting.

"They also talked about health issues of the accused, including protective measures," he added, but could not give details.

Duch's trial is expected to take three to four months. 

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