Japan Gives More Than $2 M To KR Tribunal Resource Center

Japan will provide more than $2 million to help establish a resource center that will house documents from the Khmer Rouge tribunal, officials said.

The $2,024,934.40 Japanese government contribution will help create the legal document center where public documents from the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia will be stored for future use and research.

“The center will keep the outcome of the tribunal for the Cam­bodian society as a legacy of the ECCC and will serve as a token of remembrance and non-recurrence of the Khmer Rouge regime,” the Japanese Embassy said in a statement released on Friday.

ECCC Spokesman Reach Sam­bath said yesterday that the UN-backed tribunal welcomed the contribution for the center. Mr Sam­bath said he was not aware of when construction would begin, but said studies have already been completed on what will be a Kh­mer-style building.

The proposed resource center, he said, would hold all sorts of documents, both digital and hard copies, available to researchers, lawyers, students and others interested in the Khmer Rouge trials.

“It is about the future,” Mr Sam­bath said of the center’s purpose.

The money from Japan will also go toward creating a bar association building where lawyers with the Cambodian Bar Association can off­er legal help to “socially vulnerable people,” the embassy said, though pointing out that “the two in­stitutions are separate in terms of administration and physical structure.”

Youk Chhang, executive director of the Documentation Center of Cambodia, currently the country’s largest repository of material on the Pol Pot regime, said his organization is already busy digitizing public documents from the Khmer Rouge tribunal along with its own archive of records and those from the Tuol Sleng prison.

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