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Khmer Rouge genocide tribunal prosecutors begin investigation

[JURIST] Prosecutors working for Cambodia's Khmer Rouge genocide tribunal [official task force website; timeline] began formal investigation Monday of criminal acts allegedly committed by surviving leaders of the communist Khmer Rouge [JURIST news archive] regime, which ruled Cambodia from 1975-1978 and was responsible for the deaths of at least 1.5 million Cambodians by execution, forced hardships, or starvation in the so-called "Killing Fields." Led by Canadian prosecutor Robert Petit [Globalpolicy.org profile] and Cambodian prosecutor Chea Leang, the investigation will collect and review evidence that could be used at trial. Petit has warned, however, that it could take months for prosecutors to return indictments [JURIST report] due the complexity of the cases and the novel structure of the court.

Twenty-seven of the UN assisted court's thirty judges and prosecutors [official list] were sworn in [JURIST report] at a ceremony in Phnom Penh last week. AFP has more.

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