During the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia (1975-79) about 1.7 million people lost their lives (almost a quarter of the population). Pol Pot and his followers wanted to transform the country into a communist peasant state. The re-education” affected everybody, who did not fit to this system: intellectuals, teachers, artists, scientists, political opponents, but also many who were denounced by neighbors, friends, relatives or simply seemed to be suspicious. After terrible interrogation under torture they were finally brought to one of the approximately 300 killing fields”, were tied up there and had to kneel blindfolded in front of one of the mass graves. Then they were killed with machetes, axes or just steel tubes or sticks.

The Cheoung EK Genocidal Center shows with a multi-language audio guide this area, where 20,000 people were killed. The dirt roads are accessible with a wheelchair, except of a few paths with roots. The Memorial Stupa in the middle of the center with the bones of hundreds of victims and the museum are accessible only by stairs. On demand the staff helps to lift the wheelchair.