Subscribe Search

Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - S-21 inmates treated like 'animals': witness

S-21 inmates treated like 'animals': witness

S-21 inmates treated like 'animals': witness

A former interrogator testifies that Duch was responsible for indoctrinating workers at S-21.

A FORMER S-21 interrogator told Cambodia's war crimes tribunal Wednesday that he received instructions to treat so-called "enemies" like animals.

Speaking on the last day of his testimony, Prak Khan, 58, told the court that his former boss, Tuol Sleng prison chief Kaing Guek Eav, alias Duch, had delivered the instructions personally.

"At S-21, it was only Duch who indoctrinated our stance.

... We had to consider the enemies as animals," he said.

Duch challenged this assertion directly, saying, "I did not have time to provide instruction to every single interrogator, including Prak Khan."

He added: "Even with my subordinate, Comrade Pon, I did not have sufficient time to give him instruction on every single aspect."

Duch said Prak Khan's statements had been influenced by the fact that he feared being prosecuted himself, adding that he didn't recognise the witness because he was "minor staff".

"At that time you were afraid, you were fearful of being arrested by me, but now you are afraid that you might face the court as I am now," said Duch, who is on trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

"I do not demand or need any of my subordinates to stand with me before the chamber."

Local visitors reach 12,000
Court spokesman Reach Sambath told reporters at a press conference Wednesday that more than 12,000 Cambodians had attended the trial since March 30.

"We are pleased that the people of Cambodia have paid much attention to this process," he said.

Another witness, Kok Sros, a former security guard at S-21, was called by the court Wednesday and is expected to give the bulk of his testimony today.


  • Kak Channthy, Cambodian Space Project frontwoman, killed in crash at 38 [Updated]

    Updated 5:05pm, Tuesday, March 20, 2018 Kak Channthy, frontwoman of popular The Cambodian Space Project, was killed Tuesday morning in a traffic accident in Phnom Penh. She was 38. Channthy, the internationally recognised singer-songwriter also known as “Srey Thy”, was reportedly travelling in a tuk-tuk on the city's

  • Australian police investigating death threat against Kem Ley's widow

    Updated: 10:17am, Friday March 23, 2018 Australian authorities on Thursday confirmed they have launched an investigation into a crudely written death threat sent tothe family of slain political analyst Kem Ley and Victoria state MP Hong Lim. The typed letter, reported to Victoria police last week, is

  • Apparel groups including H&M and Gap urge Cambodia garment industry reform, seek meeting with Hun Sen

    A group representing some of the largest apparel brands in the US and Europe – including Gap, H&M and ASOS – expressed “growing concern” on Tuesday over several controversial labour laws and ongoing court cases against unionists described as restrictive and unjust. In an open letter

  • Cambodia, states clash at UN session

    Cambodia traded shots with the international community in a heated exchange at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on Thursday evening, with states condemning the Kingdom’s ongoing crackdown on the political opposition and civil society, and an increasingly agitated Cambodia accusing member states