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Nuon Chea Release Hearing Set for February, Lawyer Says

The Khmer Rouge tribunal will hold a public hearing on the pre-trial release of jailed ideologue Nuon Chea in February, the defendant's lawyer said Wednesday.

The Pre-Trial Chamber of the tribunal courts have summoned Nuon Chea for a hearing Feb. 4, lawyer Son Arun told VOA Khmer.

Nuon Chea, 81, is seeking bail to be released from tribunal custody ahead of his atrocity crimes trial; he is charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Hisham Mousar, who monitors the tribunal for the rights group Adhoc, said Wednesday the courts should hold a hearing as soon as possible, before investigating judges are backlogged with work from the other jailed suspects, including former foreign minister Ieng Sary and former nominal head Khieu Samphan.

Nuon Chea could face a high number of civil cases against him, Hisham Mousar said.

The first to be charged, Kaing Khek Iev, or Duch, had no civil cases lodged against him, he added.