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Myanmar junta to put ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi trial for corruption


Myanmar’s junta will put ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi unproved for corruption, her lawyer said on Friday (Sept 17), adding to a raft of ongoing cases that would see her jailed for many years.

Ms. Suu Kyi has been under confinement since she and her elected government were deposed by the military during a February coup that sparked a mass uprising and a brutal crackdown on dissent.

The 76-year-old Nobelist is currently unproved for flouting coronavirus restrictions during polls her party won during a landslide last year, illegally importing walkie-talkies, and sedition.

She will face a replacement trial on four charges of corruption beginning on Oct 1 within the capital Naypyidaw, her lawyer Khin Maung Zaw said.

Each corruption charge carries a maximum sentence of 15 years.

The ongoing trials were delayed for 2 months as Myanmar grappled with a Covid-19 surge and resumed only in the week, with Ms. Suu Kyi skipping the primary day on health grounds.

Journalists are barred from all proceedings thus far.

The junta has also charged her with accepting illegal payments of gold and violating a colonial-era secrecy law, although these are yet to return to court.

Her National League for Democracy government was deposed by the military for alleged voter fraud during the 2020 polls, during which it trounced a party aligned with the generals.

A nationwide uprising and ongoing unrest have paralyzed the economy of the Southeast Asian country.

More than 1,100 people are killed and over 8,000 arrested, consistent with an area monitoring group. The military says the toll is far lower.

Junta chief Min Aung Hlaing said last month that elections would be held and a state of emergency lifted by August 2023, extending the military’s initial one-year timeline announced days after the coup.

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