After the First Trial: A Population-Based Survey on Knowledge and Perception of Justice and the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia

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Phuong Pham, Patrick Vinck, Mychelle Balthazard, Sokhom Hean
Publication Date
June 1, 2011
Publication Type
Climate, International Humanitarian Law


On July 26, 2010, Kaing Guek Eav, alias Duch, was convicted of crimes against humanity and grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Conventions for events that took place three decades earlier under the Khmer Rouge regime. Following this important milestone for the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC), the present study was implemented to (1) monitor public awareness and knowledge of the ECCC’s work, as well as of outreach and victim participation initiatives organized by the tribunal and local non-governmental organizations, (2) assess attitudes about justice and the desire for reparations for past crimes, and (3) recommend ways in which the ECCC, civil society, and the international community can continue to engage Cambodians in the work of the ECCC. This report presents the results of a survey of 1,000 Cambodians, aged 18 or above, randomly selected throughout the country to be representative of the adult population. The interviews were conducted anonymously and confidentially in December 2010 by a team of trained interviewers using a structured questionnaire. This is the second population-based survey conducted in Cambodia by the Human Rights Center. It is hoped that the findings will contribute to establishing a dialogue between the ECCC, the government, the Cambodian population, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and the international actors on the role and impact of the ECCC, expectations of the population, and beyond the Court, what must be done to deal with the violent past.