Death of Khmer Rouge executioner means little to young Cambodians

For survivors of Cambodia’s brutal Khmer Rouge regime, the death of the group’s executioner and security chief, known as Comrade Duch, has brought a further, small sense, of justice for their enduring suffering.

But for many younger people, awareness of an episode that destroyed Cambodia and horrified the world is fading in a country where the bulk of its 16 million people were born well after the fall of the regime more than 40 years ago.

Kaing Guek Eav, or Comrade Duch, who died on Wednesday was the first member of the Khmer Rouge leadership to face trial for his role within a regime blamed for at least 1.7 million deaths in the “killing fields” of Cambodia from 1975 to 1979.

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