Collective Reparations at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia

In: International Criminal Law Review
Christoph Sperfeldt Asian International Justice Initiative, Honolulu, HI, USA/ Southeast Asia

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One of the most distinct features of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) is that it combines an extensive victim participation scheme with a reparations mandate, although civil parties are limited to seeking ‘collective and moral reparations’. This article looks at recent developments in the ECCC’s collective reparations mandate and the result of the Court’s first trial in which no tangible reparations were awarded to civil parties. It will then examine recent rule amendments under which the Victims Support Section was given responsibility for designing and implementing reparations projects for civil parties and other non-judicial measures addressing the broader interests of victims. Based on these developments, the article discusses the main challenges for implementing collective reparations in Cambodia and beyond. The article concludes with some preliminary observations and lessons following the completion of the ECCC’s first trial.

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