Wendy Lobwein, Chief of Witness and Experts Support Unit

Wendy Lobwein, Chief of Witness and Experts Support Unit

VOICES FROM THE ECCC (Extraordinary Chambers in the Court of Cambodia)/THE KHMER ROUGE TRIBUNAL.

  1. Could you tell us your name and your position at the ECCC?
  2. As a general introduction for people who may not be familiar with the Witnesses/Experts Support Unit, can you describe what this unit does and your role in it?
  3. How was this court different from other international courts you’ve worked with?
  4. How do you prepare witnesses to testify and help them learn what to expect from the process?
  5. A lot of people we’ve spoken to have mentioned that it appeared to be very difficult for witnesses to testify in the courtroom. Paint a picture of their experiences for us. What was it like for people to testify—and prepare to testify—at the ECCC?
  6. Did they express common concerns or fears? Did any of these fears stop them from testifying?
  7. Did you notice different concerns, fears, or experiences between men and women?
  8. You were interviewed about your work in the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia (ICTY) several years ago (8 years ago) by PBS as part of the Women, War, and Peace podcast. You mentioned that some witnesses were unhappy with the results of the ICTY, that they said they wouldn’t have gone through so much for such a low sentence. How do witnesses at the ECCC feel about the results of the trials so far?
  9. You also mentioned that at the ICTY, there appeared to be a male path of evidence that resulted in more male involvement and testimony than female. In essence, you felt there needed to be more female investigators conducting the investigations of these mass atrocity crimes in order to better integrate female sources of evidence. Did you find this to be true at the ECCC as well, or was there a greater balance of male and female views in this court?
  10. Were there any witnesses that you know regretted their testimony or expressed disappointment about how the court used this testimony?

  11. Are there any witnesses’ stories or motivations at the ECCC that particularly resonated with you?
  12. How well did the court support witnesses? How can future international tribunals better support witnesses?

(January 31, 2020)