Detained NLD Legal Chief In Intensive Care with COVID-19

By The Irrawaddy 12 July 2021

U Nyan Win, a detained central executive committee (CEC) member of the National League for Democracy (NLD), is in intensive care at Yangon General Hospital with COVID-19, according to his lawyer. 

The 79-year-old NLD legal adviser was detained on the morning of the Feb. 1 coup, soon after the military detained State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. He was charged with sedition under Article 505(b) of the Penal Code over NLD statements on Feb. 7 and Feb. 13 

On Feb. 1, the NLD’s senior leadership, including the whole CEC, were detained by the military. His whereabouts were unknown until March 6, when his family heard he was moved to Insein Prison.  

Daw San Mar Lar Nyunt, his lawyer and a family friend, said he was healthy when she met him earlier this month.  

“He was moved to intensive care on Sunday. On Monday afternoon we briefly talked over the phone. His voice was weak and he said he was tired. We don’t know what happened to him,” she said.

Daw San Mar Lar Nyunt, who has worked with U Nyan Win for 32 years, represents him and they met every Friday at hearings, which began in mid-April.

The junta suspended trials inside Insein on July 5 due to rising COVID-19 infections. Now defense lawyers are unable to meet their clients.  

In March, the junta set up temporary courts inside Myanmar’s prisons to hear the cases of political prisoners, most of whom are also charged with incitement. 

U Nyan Win has been diagnosed with cardiomegaly, an enlargement of the heart, which is often a sign of heart disease. He also has gout and gastric problems. 

Daw San Mar Lar Nyunt represents other CEC members, including U Thein Oo, U Han Tha Myint and Dr. Myo Nyunt, who also face sedition charges over the NLD’s February statements.

By Saturday, the military regime had killed nearly 900 civilians and detained more than 6,600, of which over 5,000 are still being detained, according to the advocacy group the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners. 

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