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Tribunal Ready for Closing Statements in Major Case

Press Conference on closing statements which begins on Wednesday and run through the rest of October for the last two leaders.
PHNOM PENH -The UN-backed Khmer Rouge tribunal is set to hear closing statements in a trial against two former leaders of the regime, in a long awaited final chapter for the case.

The trial of Case 002, as it is known, has seen a number of setbacks, including the loss of two defendants, until only two leaders remained.

The trial of ideologue Nuon Chea and former head of state Khieu Samphan is only the second case the UN-backed court has undertaken since its inception in 2006.

In that time, the court has suffered allegations of mismanagement, kickbacks and corruption. It has released one defendant, Ieng Theary, whose mental state was unfit for trial, and it has seen the death of her husband, Ieng Sary, the former foreign secretary of regime.

The court has only prosecuted one individual fully, former torture chief Kaing Kek Iev, who was given a life sentence.

Closing statements begin Wednesday and run through the rest of October for the last two leaders, tribunal officials said Monday.

“We definitely expect Khieu Samphan to be in the courtroom for the whole closing statement,” tribunal spokesman Lars Olsen told reporters.

As for Nuon Chea, whether he will be there remains “a little bit unclear,” Olsen said. “He may be in the courtroom for part of the proceeding, but this remains to be seen.”