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Nuon Chea’s Courier Says Letters Were Passed to Duch

Nuon Chea, former deputy secretary in the Communist Party of Kampuchea, reading his documents is seen on a local TV at a restaurant in Phnom Penh, file photo.

The former courier for jailed Khmer Rouge leader Nuon Chea appeared before the UN-backed tribunal on Thursday, linking the regime’s chief ideologue to a security center where thousands of people were tortured and sent to the deaths.

Sot Troeung, who is 62, told the court he carried letters from Nuon Chea to the head of Tuol Sleng prison, Duch.

Prosecutors are working to link Nuon Chea and two other jailed leaders in joint criminal conspiracy.

Duch, who was given a life sentence by the court earlier this year for his role as supervisor of Tuol Sleng, has been testifying in recent weeks especially against Nuon Chea, who he claimed had ordered executions at Tuol Sleng, where more than 12,000 people were killed.

Nuon Chea, meanwhile, has denied he was Duch’s supervisor.

Sot Troeung told the court documents were put in envelops and passed between the two, though he had never seen them meet.

He also said he lived and worked in fear, worried that any mistake would “lead me to be killed.”