Aung San Suu Kyi brought to court earlier than scheduled

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A protester holds a sign demanding for the release of Myanmar civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi during a demonstration in Yangon on Wednesday. (AFP photo)

The first court hearing of ousted Myanmar civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi began earlier than scheduled and without her lawyer present, further hinting the military’s intention to end her political career.

Speaking by phone on Wednesday, her lawyer Khin Maung Zaw said that Suu Kyi appeared in front of the court via video link without a representative. The hearing had earlier been scheduled for Wednesday. He said the court has yet to recognize him as her attorney and he has been barred from seeing her since she was detained by the military.

The military justified its power seizure by alleging widespread voter fraud in November elections won by Suu Kyi’s party in a landslide.

After her detention in a dawn raid on Feb 1, Suu Kyi was charged for possessing unregistered walkie-talkies found in her home.

Her lawyer Khin Maung Zaw told AFP on Tuesday she was also charged with violating the country’s disaster management law. Further details of that charge have not been made public.

The disaster management law has also been used against deposed president Win Myint for an election campaign event that the junta claims broke coronavirus restrictions.

Her lawyer added that Suu Kyi and Win Myint, both of whom he has yet to have any contact with, were expected to appear via video link during a March 1 trial.

Suu Kyi had already made an appearance in court via video conference Tuesday, without his presence, he said.

UN rapporteur Andrews described the court proceedings as a “secretive trial”.

Meanwhile, military spokesman Zaw Min Tun said on Tuesday that both Suu Kyi and Win Myint were in a “safer place” and “in good health”.

“It’s not like they were arrested — they are staying at their houses,” the general told a press conference.

Since the February 1 military coup took place, more than 450 people have been arrested, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners monitoring group.

The United Nations have repeatedly condemned the unlawful act of power seizure by the new military administration.

Source: Bangkok Post

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