The continuous trial of the Ex leader of Mayanmar Aung San Suu Kyi took a different twist as a Millitary run court sentenced her for three more years increasing her total prison term to 20 years over electoral fraud, the Information Team of Myanmar’s State Administration Council confirmed.
She, along with former President U Win Myint and former Union Minister of Union Government Office, U Min Thu, was found guilty of electoral fraud, said the information team on Saturday.
Before this, Aung San Suu Kyi has been convicted of multiple charges, including corruption, incitement, breaching the Natural Disaster Management Law, breaching the Export and Import Law and breaching the Communications Law.
She was already sentenced to 17 years’ imprisonment for these offences, and now faces 20 years in jail, Xinhua news agency reported.
The new sentence included hard labour, her lawyers said. The 77-year-old Nobel laureate has spent most of her time in detention under house arrest in the capital Nay Pyi Taw.
The public and media have had no access to the closed-door hearings and the military has prevented her lawyers from speaking to journalists.
The court found her guilty of committing fraud in the November 2020 general election, which her party, the National League for Democracy (NLD), won overwhelmingly.
The army launched a coup last year after alleging there had been massive voter fraud in the vote, but independent election observers said the poll was “representative of the will of the people”.
Civil rights and democracy groups have denounced the legal proceedings against Ms Suu Kyi and others as a farce. The UN has said she is facing a “sham trial”. Myanmar’s military regime says Ms Suu Kyi’s trials are part of the legal process.
A spokesperson for Amnesty International told the BBC that the military is using the legal system as “another convenient tool in its arsenal to smother dissent”.
“The relentless legal assault on Aung San Suu Kyi is one of the better-known examples of how the military has weaponised the courts to bring politically motivated or farcical charges against opponents, critics and protesters,” the spokesperson said.
The military’s violent seizure of power last February triggered widespread demonstrations, prompting Myanmar’s military to crack down on pro-democracy protesters, activists and journalists.
Lolo Ijeoma Njoku Obinwannem News Writer/ Sept 4, 2022