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Judges Dismiss Khieu Samphan Translation Request


Khmer Rouge tribunal judges on Friday rejected a request from Khieu Samphan that 60,000 pages of documentation be translated into French.

The request, made by French attorney Jacques Verges, had delayed for months proceedings against the former nominal head of the regime, who is charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity. Verges has said he would be unable to defend his client without the translations.

But following a hearing on the matter in December, the Pre-Trial Chamber decided unanimously that the request was not valid, judge Prak Kim San announced Friday.

The judges found no obligations stated in the rules of the tribunal that required translation, he said, noting limited resources as well as a time limit for the courts.

Khieu Samphan’s Cambodian attorney, Sar Savan, said the decision was unacceptable, though it was met with approval by both prosecutors and lawyers for civil parties in the case.

Khieu Samphan, 77, was arrested in November 2007, and his detention has already been extended for a year.

Khmer Rouge tribunal judges on Friday rejected a request from Khieu Samphan that 60,000 pages of documentation be translated into French.

The request, made by French attorney Jacques Verges, had delayed for months proceedings against the former nominal head of the regime, who is charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity. Verges has said he would be unable to defend his client without the translations.

But following a hearing on the matter in December, the Pre-Trial Chamber decided unanimously that the request was not valid, judge Prak Kim San announced Friday.

The judges found no obligations stated in the rules of the tribunal that required translation, he said, noting limited resources as well as a time limit for the courts.

Khieu Samphan’s Cambodian attorney, Sar Savan, said the decision was unacceptable, though it was met with approval by both prosecutors and lawyers for civil parties in the case.

Khieu Samphan, 77, was arrested in November 2007, and his detention has already been extended for a year.

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