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Civil Groups to Meet Tribunal Officials Over Judge

More than 30 local and international rights and aid organizations will meet with Khmer Rouge tribunal officials Wednesday to discuss the progress of the beleaguered process, officials said Tuesday.

Rights officials are concerned the Victim's Unit of the Khmer Rouge tribunal is not yet functioning, and will likely discuss this and other matters with tribunal staff.

Victims may not come forward if they are not protected, said Long Pahnavuth, of the Open Society Justice Initiative.

The tribunal has so far indicted only one man, Kaing Khek Iev, alias Duch, the head of the Tuol Sleng torture center in Phnom Penh and a relatively small cadre, but investigators have four more names for possible indictment.

Those suspects were expected to be indicted this month, but a flap over the Cambodian investigating judge, You Bunleng, who has now been appointed to head the national Appeals Court, has outside observers worried the process is stalled again.

You Bunleng's appointment could threaten the credibility of the tribunal, UN officials have said.