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Center Seeks To Publish Names of All Khmer Rouge Victims

The Documentation Center of Cambodia is preparing a book that aims to list the names of every person who died under the Khmer Rouge.

An estimated 2 million people, or a quarter of the population, perished under the regime. The book will be a legacy to those victims, said Kok Thai Eng, deputy director of the center, as a guest on “Hello VOA” Thursday.

“For Cambodia, we have never listed the names of those who died, so I think those 2 million victims should be named in a book, as history, to be distributed to all institutions in Cambodia,” he said.

Other countries have similarly listed those who died in plane crashes or wars, he said. The Documentation Center will seek to do the same, soliciting e-mails or phone calls from the families of the dead. Family members who wish to participate can call 012 95 58 58, he said.

The book aims to list where people died, where they were from and other basic information. The center hopes to publish it over the next two years and place one in each of Cambodia's 1,621 communes.

Kok Thai Eng said he hoped the book will bring peace of mind to people after they see their loved ones listed.

“People who have called in to tell the center to list their family member's names have been really supportive and very happy,” he said.

The book project marks a next step for the Documentation Center, which has already collected thousands of documents related to the Khmer Rouge and submitted them to the UN-backed Khmer Rouge tribunal.