New ECCC-Related Review Articles
Forensic Science for Cambodian JusticeMelanie Klinkner*
PhD candidate, Centre for Legal Studies, Bournemouth University, UK. E-mail: email@example.com
Cambodia is universally associated with its killing fields – a horrific inheritance from the Khmer Rouge era. Whilst mass grave evidence from that era is referred to in history and social science publications on Cambodia, it has not featured in a legal context to date. The establishment of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) creates an opportunity for a review of this evidence 30 years after the events. Those alleged to be accountable for Cambodia's killing fields are finally being brought to justice. The question is whether this will occur with or without forensic science evidence from the mass graves. This article explores the reasons for using forensic science in the Cambodian context and outlines its potential for legal proceedings. Drawing on relevant literature in the forensic and legal areas, the article provides a brief outline of the legal context created by the ECCC and examines various projects that have recorded evidence relating to the mass graves. Employing an analysis of semistructured, in-depth interviews with forensic and legal experts as well as representatives from the ECCC and the Documentation Center of Cambodia (DC-Cam), the article explores the value of forensic science for the ECCC, including its impact on humanitarian issues in Cambodia.