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Ieng Sary defence warns of ‘blackmail’

Ieng Sary defence warns of ‘blackmail’

The Ieng Sary defence team blasted a United States congressman yesterday for calling on the US to take action against alleged political interference at the Khmer Rouge tribunal, arguing that he was asking the US to “blackmail” the court.

Congressman Ed Royce wrote to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton last month urging the US to denounce alleged political interference at the tribunal, and said further US funding to the court “should be conditioned, at the very least, upon an investigation in Case 003 that satisfies Prosecutor Cayley’s requests”.

After the court’s co-investigating judges said in April they had finished their investigation into Case 003, international co-prosecutor Andrew Cayley asked for further investigation, including suspect interviews and examination of alleged crime sites.

Ang Udom and Michael Karnavas, co-lawyers for Ieng Sary, said in a letter to Clinton yesterday that Royce was “effectively calling for the US to take coercive measures against the ECCC that smack of nothing short of blackmail”.

“Alleged political interference in judicial independence cannot be solved by further political interference,” they said.

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