The rules for the Defense: "a step backward"

07 May 2007 by Thierry Cruvellier

Since opening in July 2006, the Extraordinary Chambers, tasked with trying former Khmer Rouge leaders, has been paralyzed by the failure to adopt internal, procedural rules. Now, at last, the court is likely to have its rules in place by the end of May. On April 28, after five months of deadlock, the Cambodian Bar Association removed the last major obstacle by agreeing to lower its registration fees for foreign lawyers from $4,900 to $500. Rupert Skilbeck, Chief of the Defense Support Section, talks with IJT about issues of concern for the defense.

What is left to be clarified regarding the Defense before the Extraordinary Chambers (ECCC)?

The internal rules should clarify the way in which foreign lawyers [will] be allowed to appear before the court. It looks like they will be allowed to speak. So, that issue will hopefully be resolved. What still needs to be clarified is the process by which foreign lawyers are actually authorized by the [Cambodian] Bar Association and what happens if the Bar Association refuses to authorize one, or if the Bar disciplines a foreign lawyer and takes him off the list.

What system for paying defense lawyers will prevail?

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