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Additional Khmer Rouge Suspect To Appear at Tribunal Monday

Im Chaem, 68, a former Khmer Rouge regional commander, in a picture with Youk Chhang, executive director of the Documentation Center of Cambodia, in Anlong Veng, February 13, 2012. (Courtesy of Documentation of Cambodia)

Im Chaem, a former Khmer Rouge cadre and potential suspect at the UN-backed tribunal, could appear before the court on Monday, officials say.

“The court summoned her, but I don’t know what the problem is,” Yim Phanna, governor of the former Khmer Rouge stronghold of Anglong Veng district, Oddar Meanchey province, told VOA Khmer Sunday. “My official reported to me that she will go to the court on Monday.”

Im Chaem, 68, is among a small group of suspects that could be indicted in two more cases at the tribunal. The court has so far finished Case 001, for torture chief Duch, and is in the midst of Case 002, for leaders Nuon Chea and Khieu Samphan.

Im Chaem is a suspect in Case 004, a case that has been slow to move, in part, critics say, because of political interference from high levels of the Cambodian government.

Her potential appearance at court follows a guilty verdict for Nuon Chea and Khieu Samphan in the first of two phases of their atrocity crimes trials, in which they were both given life sentences for the leadership roles in the regime.

“They’ve tried the leaders already,” Yim Phanna said Sunday. “Why are they calling her?”

Tribunal spokesman Neth Pheaktra said he had no information on developments of Case 004. But a source close to the court confirmed that Im Chaem will appear Monday to answer questions before the tribunal, and possibly be indicted.

Im Chaem, who has been implicated in the purge of the Northwest Zone and as head of a security center where some 40,000 people died, was not immediately available for comment. However, she has said in the past she does not consider herself guilty of atrocity crimes.