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Documentary Chronicles Role of Suvivor, Musician

Arn Chorn Pond survived a brutal child labor camp under the Khmer Rouge by retreating into music, playing when he could his flute, despite working from 5 am to midnight each day.

A new documentary, "The Flute Player," which showed recently in Maryland, is a look into Arn Chorn Pond's music as well as his childhood and adult worlds.

Born into a Battambang family of performers and musicians, Arn Chorn Pond told VOA Khmer he was one of 500 children working at the Wat Aik labor camp following the Khmer Rouge takeover.

The children were separated from their parents and worked miserable hours, but Arn Chorn Pond said he found a way to cope: playing the flute.

"Even in these horrible conditions, I found a way to survive," he said. "I played the flute. I escaped death by execution and starvation by playing my flute for camp guards, and after Vietnamese troops invaded Cambodia in 1979, I managed to reach a refugee camp in Thailand."

Arn Chorn Pond has since established a number of projects and organizations that help victims of war, including the Master Performers Program to preserve Cambodia's musical heritage.

Arn Chorn Pond will now continue on a global tour, promoting the film, and peace, in Japan, England, Australia and India.

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Land Victim Lawyer Seeks US Support on ICC Casei
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21 January 2015
A petition filed at the International Criminal Court in October 2014 alleged that a group of politicians, security chiefs and business magnates in Cambodia have involved in systematic illegal seizures of land from poor people. They committed various crimes as part of their campaign, which included murder, forcible transfer of populations, illegal imprisonment, persecution, and other inhumane acts, according to Richard Rogers of Global Diligence. VOA Khmer Men Kimseng interviewed Richard Rogers while he was in Washington DC last week to seek international support and explain to Cambodian diaspora community in the US about the case.

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