As Ieng Sary’s hospitalisation drags into the third day, his lawyers last night warned that the ailing octogenarian’s condition did not appear to be improving.
“I think he is in a very bad condition right now,” said attorney Ang Udom. “I don’t even understand what he is saying. When I talk to him he just nods his head, but I don’t think he understands what I am saying,” said Udom, who had visited his client in the hospital each day for the past three days.
Ieng Sary is on oxygen and, due to stomach problems, eating and drinking very little, Udom said.
Co-lawyer Michael Karnavas called the situation “stable but guarded”.
“According to the doctor, he’s likely to be there for some time,” he said. “We’re optimistic that he’s going to get better.”
Meanwhile, the Trial Chamber announced yesterday that it had cancelled hearings for the rest of this week and next, when expert witnesses Philip Short and Elizabeth Becker, respectively, had been scheduled to testify.
No hearings have been scheduled for the week of March 18th, and court press officer Neth Pheaktra said yesterday that whether the court would hear the testimony of medical experts on the health conditions of Ieng Sary and Nuon Chea the following week as planned depended on the status of the interpreters’ strike.
No talks with the strikers’ occurred yesterday, and no more staff had joined them, he added.