Zed
History 52'

PHNOM PENH 1975, THE BESIEGED EMBASSY

Cambodia, April 17, 1975. As Phnom Penh fell into the hands of the Khmer Rouge, hundreds of Westerners and Cambodians gathered at the French embassy, the only diplomatic representation still open. Pol Pot's men surrounded the building and ordered the handover of all Cambodians who sheltered there.

 

During the three weeks of the crisis, each of them had to make choices that would determine the rest of their lives, whether to abandon their loved ones, adopt a newborn or marry a stranger. In the name of realpolitik, the French government ended up abandoning almost all the Cambodian refugees in the chancellery to the Khmer Rouge - some 750 men, women and children.

 

Fifty years on, this film questions the memory of these forgotten events, inviting those who witnessed the siege of the embassy to revisit this tragic episode in our post-colonial history.

Direction: Kostia Testut & Jonathan Desoindre

Production: ZED & Paraíso Production for France Télévisions

Delivery: April 2025

Credits: © Photovintagefrance

Languages: French, English

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