PHNOM PENH (Kyodo) Tokyo announced Friday it will provide a further $11.7 million to the U.N-assisted tribunal trying former Khmer Rouge leaders for atrocities.

The Japanese Embassy here said $8.8 million is for the international component and $2.9 million is for the national component of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, as the tribunal is formally known. “This contribution will cover 25 percent of the ECCC’s operational cost throughout the year 2011,” it said.

The ECCC, which has spent more than $80 million since being set up in 2005, although it has so far convicted only one Khmer Rouge figure, has a budget of $87.1 million for 2010-2011.

Japan is its single largest donor, accounting for nearly half of the total pledges and contributions made to date.

The embassy said this year is critical for the ECCC’s judicial proceedings with the hearings of appeal of the case of former chief jailer Kaing Guek Ieu, alias Duch, to commence at the Supreme Court Chamber and trials of five other Khmer Rouge leaders to start at the Trial Chamber.

The embassy said the trials are intended to deliver justice for the victims and ensure atrocities never occur again.

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