Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - DC-Cam director vouches for docs

DC-Cam director vouches for docs

DC-Cam director vouches for docs

120202_04

Youk Chhang, director of the Documentation Centre of Cambodia, testified at the Khmer Rouge tribunal yesterday that the organisation’s archives were accessible to all parties at the court, including defence teams that have recently claimed the organisation is biased.

Will Baxter/Phnom Penh Post
Youk Chhang, director of the Documentation Centre of Cambodia, pictured last month at Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, took the stand at the ECCC yesterday.

Under questioning from senior assistant co-prosecutor Tarik Abdhulhak, Youk Chhang said that since 2006, prosecution, defence and civil party lawyers had been allocated days during which they could conduct research at DC-Cam.

“They may ask questions or sometimes they hold their internal discussions and if they have any questions for us, then they will put questions to me,” he said.

“The documents that we have indicate that they are the documents belonging to the Democratic Kampuchea period, based on the content, the physical appearance, the source of the document.”

Under earlier questioning from the prosecution, Youk Chhang said he could immediately identify a “Khmer Rouge document”.

“The language is so specific, it is not that difficult to distinguish, or to have to have a doctoral degree, to distinguish this type of document,” he said.

“Reading documents is like having breakfast for me.”

In recent evidence hearings, defence teams have suggested that DC-Cam’s research is biased against the defendants in Case 002, and have requested that Youk Chhang be called to testify.

Civil party lead co-lawyer Elisabeth Simmoneau Fort later questioned Youk Chhang about a statement he gave to investigators in 2009, in which he said he had received “veiled threats” in 1999 that led him to “put a pause” on his research.

Michael Karnavas, co-defence counsel for Ieng Sary, objected that the question was “non-relevant”.

The Trial Chamber, however, allowed Youk Chhang to answer the question, to which he responded that his sister was told to inform him to stop “conducting these activities”, but that he had refused.

DC-Cam was established as an independent NGO in 1997 and has provided about 500,000 documents to parties at the ECCC. Defence teams will begin questioning Youk Chhang in court today.

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman