News / Asia

Khmer Rouge Tribunal Staff Threatens Strike

People attend a hearing for former Khmer Rouge leaders at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, November 21, 2011.
People attend a hearing for former Khmer Rouge leaders at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, November 21, 2011.
VOA News
Cambodian staff at the U.N.-backed Khmer Rouge war crimes tribunal are threatening to go on strike over unpaid wages.

About 250 staff members, including judges and prosecutors, have not been paid since June. About 100 of them say they will stop their work on Sunday unless they are paid.

The crisis has prompted U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to issue a statement appealing for more money. His statement said "the very survival of the court is now in question," and "financial failure would be a tragedy for the people of Cambodia."

Cambodian government spokesman Ek Tha also appealed to the international community to provide more funds, saying Phnom Penh has paid enough.

"I hope the donors will continue the funding to Cambodian side because we cannot pay more on the tribunal than the expenses we spend on the Supreme Court and Appeals Court of Cambodia," he said. "It's impossible to do that because we have spent 257 percent and 300 percent of our budget on what we spent on local courts. The Cambodian government, I would say, has spent $16.9 million since 2006. It's extremely too much."

The court has faced several funding problems since its founding in 2006, including a staff strike over unpaid wages in March of this year.

Neth Pheaktra, a spokesman of Khmer Rouge Tribunal, told VOA Khmer that if a new strike takes place, it will cause trouble for the tribunal.

"Some of the work that we plan to do, such as some documents that need to be translated, and the issuance of the closing statement, will be stalled or delayed because of a lack of resources," he said.

The court was set up to prosecute the top leaders of the Khmer Rouge regime, which is blamed for the deaths of nearly two million Cambodians during its bloody rule four-year rule in the late 1970s.

So far, the court has only handed down one conviction, and the advanced age of the remaining defendants has cast doubt on the prospects finishing its job while they are still alive, or able to participate in their trials for war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity.

Kaing Guek Eav, alias Duch, before the war crimes tribunal, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, March 19, 2012.Kaing Guek Eav, alias Duch, before the war crimes tribunal, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, March 19, 2012.
x
Kaing Guek Eav, alias Duch, before the war crimes tribunal, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, March 19, 2012.
Kaing Guek Eav, alias Duch, before the war crimes tribunal, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, March 19, 2012.
Nuon Chea and Khieu Samphan, both in their 80s, are the only senior Khmer Rouge leaders alive and considered fit to stand trial. They deny the charges. The group's leader, Pol Pot, died in 1998, and co-founder Ieng Sary died earlier this year.

​Former Khmer Rouge prison chief Kaing Guek Eav, better known as "Duch," was sentenced last year to life in prison for his role in killing more than 14,000 while running the Tuol Sleng torture and execution center in Phnom Penh.

You May Like

UN: 1 Million Somalis at Risk of Hunger

Group warns region is in dire need of humanitarian aid, with at least 200,000 children under age of five acutely malnourished as drought hits southern, central part of nation More

Human Rights Groups Allege Supression of Freedoms in Thailand

Thailand’s military, police have suppressed release of independent report assessing human rights in kingdom during first 100 days of latest coup More

Jennifer Lawrence Contacts FBI After Nude Photos Hacked

'Silver Linings Playbook' actress' photos were posted on image-sharing forum 4chan; Federal Bureau of Investigations is looking into matter More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forcesi
X
September 02, 2014 12:58 PM
A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Internet, Technology Offer New Tools for Journalists

The Internet and rapidly evolving technology is quickly changing how people receive news and how journalists deliver it. There are now more ways to tell a story than ever before. One school in Los Angeles is teaching the next generation of journalists with the help of a state-of-the-art newsroom. Elizabeth Lee has this report.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.
Video

Video Cost to Raise Child in US Continues to Rise

The cost of raising a child in the United States continues to rise. In its latest annual report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says middle income families with a child born in 2013 can expect to spend more than $240,000 before that child turns 18. And sending that child to college more than doubles that amount. VOA’s Deborah Block visited with a couple with one child in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn if the report reflects their lifestyle.
Video

Video Chaotic Afghan Vote Recount Threatens Nation’s Future

Afghanistan’s troubled presidential election continues to be rocked by turmoil as an audit of the ballots drags on. The U.N. says the recount will not be completed before September 10. Observers say repeated disputes and delays are threatening the orderly transfer of power and could have dangerous consequences. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.

AppleAndroid