Cambodia's Khmer Rouge tribunal hears about forced marriages

The U.N.-backed tribunal trying members of Cambodia's former Khmer Rouge regime for genocide and other crimes has turned its attention to forced marriages, with witnesses testifying how such bonds were supposed to serve the state rather than personal desires.

The defendants — Khieu Samphan, head of state in the 1970s regime, and Nuon Chea, right-hand man to the communist group's late leader, Pol Pot — already received life sentences in 2014 after being found guilty of crimes against humanity. Some 1.7 million people are estimated to have died from starvation, disease and execution as a result of the group's extremist policies.

Charges against the defendants in their second trial include genocide against ethnic minorities, along with implementing policies of rape and forced marriages.