A Change of Guard

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Thursday 29 July 2010

FM Hor Namhong not happy with Duch's sentence

By Khmerization
Source: RFA

Foreign Minister Hor Namhong (pictured) has expressed his disappointment at the light sentence handed down to Duch, chief of the notorious Tuol Sleng Torture Centre where up to 16,000 inmates were brutally tortured and executed by the Khmer Rouge regime from 1975-1979, reports Radio Free Asia.

The Khmer Rouge Tribunal has on Monday sentenced Duch to 35 years jail, but has reduced his sentence by 5 years for his good cooperation with the court. Because he had illegally been detained for the last 11 years, Duch will only need to serve 19 of his 35 years sentence.

Speaking at a conference at Phnom Penh International Airport upon returning from a visit to Singapore, Mr. Hor Namhong said the government has not taken any position on Duch's sentence, but he personally thinks it is not appropriate. "Because this is the works of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, the government has no position (on this matter). My personal position is that I am of the view that it is not appropriate, comparing to the nearly 3 million Cambodians who have died. Hundreds of thousands of Khmer people have been tortured at Tuol Sleng and then executed at Cheung Ek (Killing Fields). This sentence seems a bit light, not comparable to the numbers of people who have been killed", he said.

Mr. Hor Namhong himself was chief of Boeng Trobek Re-Education Centre in Phnom Penh during the Khmer Rouge regime, where hundreds of intellectuals, diplomats and former government officials were imprisoned and sent to be tortured and executed at Tuol Sleng. However, he claimed that he was also the victim and that he had lost more than 10 of his relatives who were imprisoned at Boeng Trobek Re-Education Centre.


Francisco Castelo Branco said...

there is a life sentence in your country?

i think the man will die in jail or when he came out at 86 years, obviously he will be very fragile

Anonymous said...

Yes, there is life sentence, but no death penalty. He might die, but he might still be alive when he comes out of jail. However, what important is that he killed 16,000 people ads so he deserved a harsher sentence, may be life sentence. After all, some people who just killed one or two people and still get executed or life imprisonment.