The Khmer Rouge forbade the conduct of any funeral rites at the time of the death of the estimated two million people who perished during their rule (1975–79). Since then, however, memorials have been erected and commemorative ceremonies performed, both public and private, especially at former execution sites, known widely as the killing fields. The physical remains themselves, as well as images of skulls and the haunting photographs of prisoners destined for execution, have come to serve as iconic representations of that tragic period in Cambodian history and have been deployed in contested interpretations of the regime and its overthrow.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal

During the Spanish Civil War, extrajudicial executions and disappearances of political opponents took place and their corpses were buried in unregistered mass graves. The absence of an official policy by successive democratic governments aimed at the investigation of these cases, the identification and exhumation of mass graves, together with legal obstacles, have prevented the victims families from obtaining reparation, locating and recovering the human remains. This paper argues that this state of affairs is incompatible with international human rights law and Spain should actively engage in the search for the whereabouts and identification of the bodies with all the available resources.

Human Remains and Violence: An Interdisciplinary Journal

the hostages with greater commercial and political value, mobilisation campaigns may serve to protect their lives and pressure those with the power to facilitate their release. British journalists have noted that the lack of information and public advocacy on behalf of aid workers David Haines and Allan Henning, who were abducted in Syria by the Islamic State (IS) in 2014, did not prevent their execution. On the contrary, the silence of their

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Interpreting Violence on Healthcare in the Early Stage of the South Sudanese Civil War

between Kiir and Machar on 15 December 2013, Human Rights Watch pointed to the Presidential Guard’s – recruited among the President’s Dinka community – mass targeting of Nuer civilians, including public figures, for arrest and execution in the capital city as playing a crucial role in the rapid mobilisation of Nuer on the opposition’s side in Unity and Upper Nile states and in setting the tone for the cycle of violence in both states ( Human Rights Watch, 2014 : 23

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Rothenburg, 1561–1652

Given the widespread belief in witchcraft and the existence of laws against such practices, why did witch-trials fail to gain momentum and escalate into ‘witch-crazes’ in certain parts of early modern Europe? This book answers this question by examining the rich legal records of the German city of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, a city that experienced a very restrained pattern of witch-trials and just one execution for witchcraft between 1561 and 1652. The book explores the factors that explain the absence of a ‘witch-craze’ in Rothenburg, placing particular emphasis on the interaction of elite and popular priorities in the pursuit (and non-pursuit) of alleged witches at law. By making the witchcraft narratives told by the peasants and townspeople of Rothenburg central to its analysis, the book also explores the social and psychological conflicts that lay behind the making of accusations and confessions of witchcraft. Furthermore, it challenges the existing explanations for the gender-bias of witch-trials, and also offers insights into other areas of early modern life, such as experiences of and beliefs about communal conflict, magic, motherhood, childhood and illness. Written in a narrative style, the study invites a wide readership to share in the drama of early modern witch trials.

universes. The Islamic judge complains, ‘whenever I try to get explanations, I’m told what I have the habit of telling people’. He initially refuses to give the written order for reburial, invoking his deontological responsibility before his hierarchical superiors, and his moral one before God. On the one hand, the Islamic judge, who is in charge of prison DHR.indb 185 5/15/2014 12:51:22 PM 186  Chowra Makaremi sentences and execution in the revolutionary tribunal, sketches the ideological and moral horizon that organizes the administration of death. On the other, this

in Destruction and human remains
Exhumations of Soviet-era victims in contemporary Russia

extrajudicial processes. Such sentences were, as a rule, carried out in the place where the investigation had occurred and the sentence was passed, i.e. in those cities that had prisons where the people under investigation could be held. In particular, these tended to be administrative centres at the district, regional, or republic level. The need to conceal the facts and the locations of these unlawful executions, combined with their large scale during the years of the Great Terror, when in a single night several dozen or even several hundred people might be killed, led to

in Human remains and identification
Open Access (free)
Mass violence, corpses, and the Nazi imagination of the East

administration. Prior to this period, efforts to contain the partisan movement were sporadic, consisting mostly of foot patrols, the taking of hostages, fines against the civilian population, and select mass reprisals, such as executions and the burning of villages. Security forces complained about these methods, arguing they failed to comprehensively address the growing threat. Decisions were then made to conduct so-called ‘large operations’ (Grossunternehmen), in which Wehrmacht DHR.indb 75 5/15/2014 12:51:09 PM 76  Michael McConnell divisions would operate alongside

in Destruction and human remains
Open Access (free)
The bodyand counter-revolutionary warfare inapartheid South Africa

8 Death and dismemberment: the body and counter-revolutionary warfare in apartheid South Africa 1 Nicky Rousseau As resistance intensified in what would turn out to be apartheid’s final decade, security forces in South Africa began covertly to exe­cute opponents extra-judicially, despite a formidable arsenal of security legislation and a state of emergency from 1985 to 1990.2 A noteworthy aspect of these executions is that the modes of killing varied, sometimes along regional lines, or according to the particular security unit involved. Disposal of the bodies

in Destruction and human remains
Open Access (free)

chaplain, of the Newgate prison. These embellished the trial with a synopsis of the sermon preached to the condemned criminal, a narrative of his life and crimes, any statement provided (or allegedly provided) by the condemned, and details of his execution.11 The inclusion of sermons and defendants’ speeches from the scaffold imposed a moral tone on these accounts, however sensational their subject-matter. The object of raising the reader’s moral standards by warning of the fatal consequences of bad conduct was made explicit in the genre that succeeded the Accounts in

in Domestic and international trials, 1700–2000