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Witness says she saw Duch kill Cambodians

Written By vibykhmer on Monday, July 13, 2009 | 11:09 AM


Nam Mon, a former medic at the Khmer Rouge's S21 prison, testifies on July 13 2009, at the Cambodia war crimes trial of Comrade Duch. [ABC]

A former medic at Khmer Rouge's S21 prison has testified at a trial in Cambodia that she saw the prison warden bludgeon two men to death.

Nam Mon, a civil claimant at the United Nations-back war crimes trial in Phnom Penh, is the first witness so far to speak of seeing the warden, known Comrade Duch, killing inmates.

Her testimony is significant to Duch's defence because he has said he simply followed orders and did not personally torture or kill any of the 15,000 people murdered at the prison between 1975 and 1979.

Uncles bludgeoned

Nam Mon told the court that while working as a medic at S21, she watched from the third floor as Duch beat both of her uncles to death under a palm tree outside the prison gate.

But Duch, whose real name is Kaing Guek Eav, rejected her testimony entirely.

He said none of the names she had provided were on the list of S21 prisoners and said there were no women medics in the prison.

He said he was shocked that all of Nam Mon's family had died under the Khmer Rouge.

Duch is charged with crimes against humanity and faces life in prison if convicted.

Four other former Khmer Rouge leaders will face the court once Duch's trial ends later this year.

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