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Two senior Khmer Rouge leaders to stay another year in detention

The UN-backed Khmer Rouge tribunal on Friday extended detention of two regime’s former senior leaders Ieng Sary and his wife, Ieng Thirith, to another year.

In a statement, co-investigating judges Marcel Lemonde and You Bunleng said that the extension is to “ensure security” of the two accused and to “preserve public order” and that they will not put “pressure” on witnesses.

“It does not need any more such conditions to extend the detention,” said Ang Oudom, a lawyer for Ieng Sary, who filed the appeal against the decision yesterday. “We need him in a good health to be present in the trial,” he said.

He has argued for putting his client under surveillance in a house or in the hospital.

Ieng Sary, 84, former deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs, and his wife, Ieng Thirith, 77, were arrested on 12 November 2007 to face charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The courts allow provisional detention up to a three year period with an extension every year. This will be the third and final one for the two accused.