Five detained leaders of the Khmer Rouge have been granted
the rights to interact with each other while in tribunal detention, canceling
and earlier ban.
The five leaders had not been able to meet with each other
since their respective arrests over the last half of 2007; judges concluded
such collusion could jeopardize their investigations into charges of war crimes
and crimes against humanity.
Son Arun, lawyer for Nuon Chea, said the courts had
lifted the ban.
Tribunal spokesman Peter Foster said the Pre-Trial Chamber
of the tribunal courts had found no reason to continue separation of the five
leaders, Nuon Chea, 82, Khieu Samphan, 76, Ieng Sary, 82, Ieng Thirith, 77, and
Kaing Kek Iev, 65.
The lift of segregation comes as trials for the five
former leaders continue remain delayed. The first trial will likely not
be held until early 2009, for Tuol Sleng prison chief Kaing Kek Iev, better
known by his revolutionary name, Duch.
Meanwhile, three Khmer Rouge leaders were taken to the
hospital for check-ups this week: Nuon Chea, Khieu Samphan and Ieng Sary.