Myanmar Regime Delays Trial of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi Until September

By The Irrawaddy 23 August 2021

The legal defense team of deposed State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and ousted President U Win Myint said they would ask for permission to meet their two clients, after their trials were delayed again until early September. The lawyers have not met the pair for six weeks, since their trials were suspended due to the surge in COVID-19 cases.

“We were told by the Zabuthiri Township Court today that the trial has been delayed until September 6 and 7. We haven’t met the two for more than six weeks. And we have not heard from them during that period, so we’ll apply this week to meet them,” Naypyitaw lawyer U Khin Maung Zaw told The Irrawaddy.

The trials of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and President U Win Myint were adjourned when the military regime imposed a nationwide lockdown on July 17 amid soaring coronavirus cases. The lockdown has since been extended until the end of August.

Defense lawyers will ask the court for permission to meet Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, U Win Myint and ousted Naypyitaw Mayor Dr. Myo Aung in connection with the new charges brought against them, said U Khin Maung Zaw.

Last week, Myanmar’s Anti-Corruption Commission filed more corruption charges against the State Counselor, the President, Dr. Myo Aung, former Naypyitaw Vice-Mayor and former Yangon Region minister U Ye Min Oo and former Naypyitaw Development Committee members in connection with land permits they granted in the capital.

A Naypyitaw police station has accepted the cases, which will be heard at the Mandalay Region High Court. The regime claims that the country lost more than 14 billion kyats when the National League for Democracy (NLD) government sold land in the commercial district of Naypyitaw’s Dekkhinathiri Township for prices much lower than the market rates.

The regime has charged them under Section 55 of the Anti-Corruption Law, which carries a 15 year prison sentence.

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was detained when the junta seized power in a February 1 coup, claiming that the NLD’s landslide victory in the 2020 general election was marred by fraud.

Since then, the State Counselor has been held in an unknown location. She faces up to 75 years in prison under multiple charges including alleged breaches of COVID-19 regulations, possession of walkie-talkies, corruption, incitement and a case under Official Secrets Act.

The military regime’s determination to destroy the NLD has become more and more apparent lately, with the junta-appointed Union Election Commission already auditing the political parties in Naypyitaw in its efforts to accuse the NLD of accepting foreign currency from external sources.

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