ARTICLES / Cambodia

The Straits Times: “Cambodian skulls a bone of contention”

skullsPHNOM PENH, Cambodia – Hundreds of human skulls sit stacked on dusty shelves inside a former Khmer Rouge prison in Cambodia’s capital, in what is now known as the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum.

“Cranium of a man, 20 to 40 years old,” says one sign. “Gunshot wound of the right side of the top of the head, with the bullet passing into the brain from right to left and downwards in a 45 degree angle.”

“I’ve never seen anything like it,” said Ms Briana Fitzgerald, a visitor from Australia. “It does make it more real for us.”

This interrogation centre where an estimated 17,000 people were murdered between 1975 and 1978 is one of more than 80 sites in Cambodia where human skulls are displayed – potent reminders of a murderous regime.

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