Cambodia to cremate Khmer Rouge co-founder
MALAI, Cambodia (AFP) - Hundreds of relatives and former Khmer Rouge fighters are expected to gather on Thursday for the cremation of regime co-founder Ieng Sary, who died last week while on trial for genocide.
The 87-year-old's death cheated Cambodians of a verdict over his role in the hardline communist regime's atrocities and handed another blow to the United Nations (UN)-backed tribunal, which has been blighted by delays and cash shortages.
Grieving in Ieng Sary's hometown of Malai close to the Thai border has illustrated the lingering divide between supporters of the former regime and those who survived its brutality.
"He is a hero for the people of Malai," said former Khmer Rouge fighter Long Run, 78, describing the Khmer Rouge's former foreign minister as a "patriot" who defended the country from Vietnamese invaders.