Khmernews

Civil Society: That Nuon Chea’s Verdicts Have Yet To Be Released Is Not A Delay

Posted by khmernews on February 25, 2008

Koh Keo

Phnom Penh: The primary ruling of the [Pre-Trial Chambers] of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) on Noun Chea’s provisional detention still have not been clearly scheduled to release after the adjournment on February 4, 2008. However, civil society organizations claimed that it is not a delay.
Reach Sambath, spokesman for the Khmer Rouge tribunal, told Kampuchea Thmey that up to now the Pre-Trial Chamber has not determined the specified date to release its decisions on the appeal by Nuon Chea’s lawyers against their client’s provisional detention yet, since they need time to scrutinize the case.

Reach Sambath added that the Pre-Trial Chamber will give a prior notice of two days before the date on which they will issue their decisions.

Pong Chhiv Kek, President of the LICADHO, said that reason of the late announcement of the verdicts on the appeal by Nuon Chea’s lawyers is that the court needs time to review the case since there are some controversies [in] the appeal hearing against the detention. “In the February 4 hearing, Nuon Chea’s lawyer questioned that ‘why are the lawyers of plaintiffs allowed to take part in the hearing?” said Pong Chhiv Kek.

“On the 4th of February, the plaintiffs claimed that in the name of the plaintiffs they need to observe the whole process of the court while the defence attorney challenged that in that phase only his client should be allowed in the hearing,” said Pong Chhiv Kek, adding it is the issue for all Cambodians. “Therefore, the Khmer Rouge trial needs time to consider. It must comply with the international law, avoiding any practices which violate the international norms. The arrest, for example, cannot be carried out without a warrant. This will set a good model for Cambodia in the future,” said Pong Chhiv Kek.

“Spending some days to issue of the verdicts on Nuon Chea’s appeal against detention is not too long because lawsuits need more time [for all parties] to respond to each other to find the truth,” pointed out Pong Chhiv Kek.

It should be noticed that the February 4 appeal hearing by Nuon Chea’s lawyers was adjourned because Michiel Pestman, a Dutch lawyer of Nuon Chea, was absent.

Unofficial Translation
-Extracted from Kampuchea Thmey, vol. 07, #1567, Thursday, February 14, 2008.

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