Last week, the Trial Chamber of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) rendered its first genocide convictions more than forty years after the relevant events.
The hybrid tribunal opened its doors in 2006 for trials of heinous crimes committed during the 1975-1979 Khmer Rouge regime. After a very slow start, the Trial Chamber finally completed its case against second in command to Pol Pot and former chief ideologist for the Khmer Rouge Nuon Chea and former Khmer Rouge Head of State Khieu Samphan.
They were found guilty of genocide against the Cham minority, with the Trial Chamber noting the numerous executions and the widespread dispersal of other Chams to be fully assimilated into the Cambodian population, as well as the regime’s imposition of various forms of extreme religious discrimination upon them.
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