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Truman-Reagan Medal of Freedom

Youk Chhang

A survivor of the Khmer Rouge killing fields, Youk Chhang has been the Director of the Documentation Center of Cambodia (DC-Cam), an NGO that researches and documents the era of Khmer rule in Cambodia, since its creation in 1995. Before he became the director of DC-Cam, Chhang worked for the International Republican Institute and was a member of the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia. He was also a member of the group that founded the International Criminal Court in The Hague in 2003, and is currently a senior fellow at the Center for the Study of Genocide, Conflict Resolution, and Human Rights at Rutgers University in New Jersey. He is currently working to fundraise to build a museum, which will eventually be known as the Sleuk Rith Institute. It will serve as a permanent home to DC-Cam and be Asia’s primary center for genocide studies. In addition to receiving the Truman-Reagan Medal of Freedom in 2000, Chang also received the Ramon Magsaysay Award, often referred to as Asia’s Nobel Prize, in 2018.