Pka Sla event on forced marriage under the Khmer Rouge regime in Phnom Penh
On 20 January 2017, the Pka Sla project premiered to the public a deeply moving performance at Chaktomuk Hall in Phnom Penh. Pka Sla’s dance performance and exhibition on forced marriage under the Khmer Rouge regime are part of a unique judicial and human experience for survivors: symbolic reparation, healing and reconciliation, through art.
The Pka Sla project is the only proposed judicial reparation initiative that addresses the harm suffered by Cambodian women and men as a result of forced marriages and makes the ECCC’s historic hearings on sexual and gender-based violence under the Khmer Rouge regime accessible to a broader public. Many civils parties, their relatives, youth groups, and the general public attended these impressive performances at three consecutive evenings.
The objective of Pka Sla project is to foster the understanding of gender based violence and gender equity through artistic memorialization, intergenerational dialogue, documentation and research, and therapeutic support. The main beneficiaries are victims of crimes committed during the Khmer Rouge Regime, who decided to become civil parties at the ECCC. The project is offering them – be it through the exhibition, the dance performance or the panel dialogue – a unique opportunity to share their stories with the younger generation. “Art can help ease the suffering of the survivors. Only art can convey the suffering of the victims to everyone and allow healing to begin,” Dy Chhunsong, reparations program manager at the ECCC stated to the press.
Pka Sla project is implemented by a consortium of four local NGOs, Khmer Arts Academy, Kdei Karuna, Transcultural Psychosocial Organization and Bophana Center in close consultation with over 100 civil parties. The project is supported by the Government of Switzerland through the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) in Cambodia and the German Government in partnership with USAID.
To reach a broader audience and to promote dialogue and healing, the dance performance and mobile exhibition of Pka Sla will tour in the provinces, starting with Battambang this May and Kampot in August. A documentary on the whole Pka Sla project will be broadcasted on national television in 2018.Panel discussion with TPO, civil parties, KdK and Sophiline