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Khmer Rouge leaders ruled fit to face court

Nuon Chea (left) and Khieu Samphan sit in the dock during the announcement of the Supreme Court Chamber in the ECCC’s appeal judgment on Case 002/01 in November 2016. They have both been found fit for trial ahead of a second judgement, expected to be handed down mid-2018. ECCC
Nuon Chea (left) and Khieu Samphan sit in the dock during the announcement of the Supreme Court Chamber in the ECCC’s appeal judgment on Case 002/01 in November 2016. They have both been found fit for trial ahead of a second judgement, expected to be handed down mid-2018. ECCC

Khmer Rouge leaders ruled fit to face court

Elderly Khmer Rouge leaders Nuon Chea and Khieu Samphan have been found fit to hear a judgment in the second trial against them, in which they stand accused of multiple crimes against humanity, including genocide.

Chea, the regime’s “Brother Number Two”, and Samphan, its head of state, have already been found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Court documents say two medical experts were requested to provide information to allow the trial chamber “to determine whether or not each Accused is currently fit to stand trial for the purposes of the delivery of judgement” in Case 002/02, which is projected to be delivered in June.

The documents revealed Samphan, 86, has been hospitalised multiple times during the trials. He “has history of several chronic ailments and repeated episodes of hospitalization but [experts] note that he has fully recovered from the most recent episodes and has not been admitted to hospital since 2017”.

Chea, 91, has chronic ailments, including back pain, and was described as “frail” and at risk of “deconditioning with a rapid decline of physical function”.

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