Ieng Sary Defense Press Case for Hospitalization

Lawyers for former Khmer Rouge Foreign Minister Ieng Sary have renewed their call for the ailing 82-year-old to be hospitalized, saying his health “has de­teriorated markedly” since their January ap­peal against his detention.

In response to a similar request last month, the Khmer Rouge tribunal’s co-investigating judges appointed doctors to examine Ieng Sary but said that doctors and not judges would decide whether he could remain at the court’s detention facility.

However, in pleadings filed Thurs­­day, lawyers Ang Udom and Mi­chael Karnavas argued that the court’s Pre-Trial Chamber should or­der Ieng Sary, who has been ta­ken to the hospital four times this year alone, to remain hospitalized for the duration of the judicial investigation instead of being placed under house arrest, which the de­fense originally sought in appealing his detention.

“[V]ery often the improvements in the condition of Mr Ieng Sary are only temporary and after being released from hospital and returning to the detention unit, he is obliged to return” to the hospital, the lawyers argued. Ieng Sary had left Calmette Hospital on March 7 and returned within 48 hours, they said.

Court spokesman Reach Sam­bath said Sunday that doctors caring for Ieng Sary were aware of the possible effects of transporting the defendant to and from the hospital.

“They would not do that if they knew it was a problem,” he said.

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