Public Information Room (PIR)


General Activities in Cambodia

The Public Information Room was established three years ago to serve the Cambodian public and visitors from abroad. To date, it has received over 7,200 visitors and provided 6,072 pages of documentation. This quarter, we received visitors from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Canada, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, New Zealand, Philippines, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, UK, and the USA, in addition to Cambodians.


January highlights. Some examples of our assistance included providing photographs to a French filmmaker; helping students from the Royal University of Fine Arts with research on security offices (prisons) and other topics; and arranging interviews for former Tuol Sleng photographer Nhem En.



Selected Visitors to the PIR in the First Quarter

Media: French TV, Swiss TV, CNN, CTN (Cambodia) The Sunday Times, Cambodge Soir, Reaksmi Kampuchea, Le Figaro, Cambodia Daily, New York Times, Globe Magazine, Health Magazine of Cambodia, CBC Radio, BBC, AP, Brunei TV, Travel and Leisure, Radio Free Asia, Pacific Films, and freelancers from 6 countries.


Students: 6 Cambodian universities and one high

school, Aulsorg University (Denmark), British

Columbia Institute of Technology (Canada),

Coventry University (UK), Depaw and Yale

Universities and UC Berkeley (US)


NGOs: Foundation for Human Rights and Freedom (Turkey), YFP (Switzerland), BLZ, CHR, CMAK, Cul Comp, GYC, Khmer Victims Association, KIND, KYA, KCD, Khmer Youth Association, KYSD, SNRO, Open Public Forum of Cambodia, WMC, YCC, Youth for Peace, YRDP, and others (Cambodia), National League of POW/MIA (USA), Seapara Association (Philippines), PRD (Thailand), Asian Human Rights

Commission of Hong Kong


Government: ECCC, Ministry of Architecture and

Planning, authorities from Anlong Veng district, the Election Committee of Banteay Meanchey Province, New Zealand Film Archives, Australian Archives, UN

The PIR held three public forums in January for students and NGOs. At each, a film was shown and staff members gave an introduction to Khmer Rouge history and developments in the ECCC. In addition DC-Cam team leaders gave presentations on the Center and their projects, and held question-and-answer sessions after the screenings.


· 25 members of the NGO Global     Youth Connect on January 4


· 15 students from the Royal University of Law and Economics on January 29


· 50 students from Build Bright University (Phnom Penh).


All of those attending were encouraged to study their country’s history in more detail. Students who appeared curious to learn more were given diaries for their research


February Highlights. Our assistance included providing over 30 sets of Tribunal related materials to the Peace Building Unit of the Khmer Youth Association and the NGO Sipar, holding five film screenings for Cambodian university students, and hosting training sessions (on mental health for the VOT Project, on legal awareness for the ECCC tours, and on public speaking for the women on DC-Cam’s staff).


The PIR also held three public forums in February. The visitors were 22 students from the Royal University of Law and Economics, 32 from Build Bright University, and 25 first-year students from the Royal University. At each forum, the students learned about the history of the regime, watched a film, and asked questions about the Tribunal.


March Highlights. We assisted several students this month, including Andraus Kranebi of the University of Vienna, who is examining the relationship between the Soviet Union and other communist countries; Agnès Deféo of Paris who is researching the Chams in Vietnam and Cambodia; and In Dana of Nagoya University in Japan who is examining the marine border between Vietnam and Democratic Kampuchea. We also provided Khmer Rouge photographs for a documentary film the NGO KID is producing entitled Don’t Forget the Past, and several documents to two students from the Royal University of Phnom Penh who are looking at the topic of education of the children of Democratic Kampuchea survivors.


Film screenings were held for visitors from Austria, Cambodia, and the United States. The PIR also hosted a training session for 50 people from Banteay Meanchey province. The sessions included presentations by DC-Cam staff on legal information, Khmer Rouge History, and the rights of witnesses and victims at the Tribunal. Mr. Alex Bath from the ECCC gave a presentation on the roles of the co-prosecutors and co-investigating judges at the Tribunal.



PIR Activities



Pages Documents Provided

Films Screened



72 + 13 photographs

3 to 76 students




5 to 84 students



287 + 34 photos

2 to 50 visitors from




abroad and Cambodia


PIR Road Trips

Only one road trip was made this quarter, to Kandal province. Trips scheduled for

February and March were postponed pending letters of permission from the Ministry of

Information and Culture and the Ministry of the Interior allowing DC-Cam to show its

new documentary Behind the Walls of S-21.


As with other road trips, the PIR Team showed films and held discussions on sexual

abuse during Democratic Kampuchea and the ECCC, and interviewed survivors on their

personal stories. This quarter, the PIR team also began providing posters on the tribunal

that have been produced by the ECCC.












Provided (sets)























The New ECCC Posters Read:

All rulings must be accepted by Cambodian and international judges, and Cambodian and

international law must be acknowledged and



Only the most responsible Khmer Rouge leaders will be sentenced; do not condemn low-ranking Khmer Rouge soldiers


Everyone can participate in this tribunal. Don’t miss this chance – join the tribunal by listening to the radio, watching TV, or reading newspapers


It is time to reveal the truth: educate Khmer children about their history.

The discussions at all three of the January forums were lively. Many of those in attendance were women over the age of 50 who had been widowed during Democratic Kampuchea; one of them stated that it was right to try only the top leaders in light of the social disorder that could result from trying thousands of lower-level cadres.


In all three sub-districts, many of the people were also survivors of Po Tonle, Prey Sar, and other prisons. They were anxious to receive assistance from the Center’s Victims of Torture Project. Three women came forward and stated that they had been induced to join the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s when they were 13 or 14 years old, but they were later imprisoned at Prey Sar and lost all their family members.


Most of those present at the meeting said that there was no sexual abuse or immoral sexual behavior in their sub-districts during the regime because everyone was afraid of being killed if such behaviors were discovered. However, three cases of sexual abuse were reported:


     ■   Buch Tauch of Koh Thom district reported that she was accused of immoral behavior with the chief of her cooperative’s kitchen. She said she was accused because she often asked for palm sugar to help her sick children, and that she was not interested in the chief, who was old and ugly. Nonetheless, she was arrested and taken for reeducation. When she did not confess, she was tortured and later released.


     ■   Tauch recalled that a man named Tann was accused of acting immorally with a local woman. The cadres tied a hose around his neck and dragged him around the village, shouting that he had committed adultery. He and the woman were killed the next day.


      ■   Takk Kimcha of Koh Thom district was imprisoned at Po Tonle. There, a woman named Soeng became pregnant, possibly by the man who succeeded her husband (he had been a chief of Po Tonle prison, but was arrested).