Cambodia's UN-backed war crimes tribunal on May 16 set June 27 as the start date for a trial of four top former Khmer Rouge leaders accused of genocide and other crimes in the 1970s.

The defendants are "Brother Number Two" Nuon Chea, former foreign minister Ieng Sary, his wife and ex-social affairs minister Ieng Thirith, and former head of state Khieu Samphan.

They face charges of genocide and war crimes, crimes against humanity and related crimes over the deaths of almost 2 million people from starvation, overwork and execution during 1975-79 period.

The trial will be the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC)’s second following the landmark conviction of Kaing Guek Eav, known as Duch, former chief of the Toul Sleng prison (S-21), who was sentenced to 35 years in jail last July./.