The SRP commemorates 17 April 1975 anniversary

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Kong Korm praying at Choeung Ek killing field memorial (All photos: SRP)
Kong Korm, Ke Sovannroth and other SRP leaders and supporters pray to the memory of the KR victims
Buddhist prayer for the victims
Kong Korm speaks to the audience
Offerings to monks

17 April 2010

By Sok Serey
Radio Free Asia
Translated from Khmer by Komping Puoy
Click here to read the article in Khmer

SRP party leaders and their supporters gathered in the Boeung Cheung Ek killing field memorial to commemorate the more than 20,000 victims who were killed there by the Khmer Rouge.

In the morning of 17 April 2010, about 300 SRP leaders and party supporters gathered to commemorate the more than 20,000 victims who were killed by the Khmer Rouge at the Boeung Cheung Ek killing field memorial. They also asked the KR Tribunal to issue severe sentence to the KR leaders in order to provide quick justice to the families of the victims who are awaiting for this justice for the past 35 years.

50 Buddhist monks and more than 20 SRP MPs, as well as several hundreds of supporters came to pray for the spirits of the more than 20,000 victims whom the KR took from the Tuol Sleng (S-21) jail to kill in the common grave at Boeung Cheung Ek, located 10-km southwest of Phnom Penh.

Opposition leader Sam Rainsy spoke over the phone from Brussels, Belgium. His call was connected to the speaker system for the audience to listen. Sam Rainsy said that the Cambodian people are waiting for justice so that they can erase the genocidal impunity: “We absolutely oppose cruelty acts, injustice and inhumane acts.”

Van Kong, a 77-year-old nun, who was visiting the common grave near there, told RFA with tears in her eyes: “All my relatives died. I am left alone. I lost my mother, and my family died also. I am the only one left.”

At the same time, another person who also came for the commemoration said: “I came to commemorate here because the Pol Pot regime killed all these innocent people.”

On 17 April 1975, i.e. 35-year ago, the black-clad KR took over power and they evacuated all the Cambodian people out of Phnom Penh city by force. These people were sent to the countryside and several were separated from their families. Later on, the KR put into application their mass killing plan which was initiated on 17 April 1975 and lasted until 07 January 1979.

More than 2 million people were killed through cruelty, forced labor, lack of food and medicines and torture.

Dim Sovannarom, spokesman for the KR Tribunal (KRT), said in regards to the search for justice for the victims by the KRT: “We plans to announce the sentence for case no. 01 [Duch’s case] by mid-2010. For case no. 02, the case will be sent for trial and the co-judges are determined to act on it in September 2010. Therefore, one determination [by the judges] is a response to the waiting of the victims, and it is also a speed up of the work for the trial of the KR.”

Up to now, the KRT has completed the trial for Kaing Kek Iev, aka Duch, the Tuol Sleng (S-21) jail chief. The sentence for case no. 01 is upcoming.

The KRT is also preparing for the trial of 4 KR leaders, including Khieu Samphan, Ieng Sary, Nuon Chea and Mrs. Ieng Thirith. This constitutes the court case no. 02.


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