Struggling Aung San Suu Kyi faces double charges against the junta

Aung San Suu Kyi is running out of money, she doesn’t know where she is being held, and mostly unaware of the violent unrest unfolding in her country, according to her lawyer.

The trial of the ousted 75-year-old Myanmar leader will begin Monday in Myanmar’s capital Naypyidaw, as she faces a growing slate of charges against her since the military toppled her government in coup.

“She has no knowledge – I mean she has no clear understanding – of what is happening in Burma,” Khin Maung Zaw, her chief lawyer, told the Financial Times, using the former name of Myanmar, where the military junta has arrested thousands of people and used deadly force to quell the uprising.

He said Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been held incommunicado since the February 1 coup, was moved from her ministerial residence in the Myanmar capital to an unknown location the night before. Court appearance On May 24th.

He said the former Myanmar leader had to leave her home where she was staying with her dog Tachito, and asked her legal team for medicine and food “to make ends meet” at a meeting last week.

Aung San Suu Kyi’s relatives, including sons in the United Kingdom and the United States, have been in touch with the British Foreign Office, “but don’t believe any letters have reached her,” according to a person close to the family, who asked not to be named.

Ex-leader imprisoned and impending trial military system It represents an unusual turn of events for the former Nobel laureate and national leader, whose NLD won overwhelmingly elections in 2015 and 2020. Criminal convictions prevented her from running for office.

“The trial is clearly a sham, and the only reason the military announced the date is due to international pressure,” said Mani Maung, Asia researcher at Human Rights Watch. “They were happy to keep Aung San Suu Kyi detained and out of sight for as long as possible.”

The junta authorities have brought five criminal charges against her, including illegally importing walkie-talkies and an electronic jamming device that was found in her home when she was arrested, and violating Myanmar’s natural disaster law by violating Covid-19 regulations during last year’s crackdown.

She made her first court appearance last month in a room in a government building that looked like a courtroom without lawyers present.

Regime authorities last week opened a new corruption investigation against her and three other former officials in connection with the alleged misuse of land and public funds of the Dao Khin Kee Foundation, a charitable group established in honor of her late mother.

According to a report in the government-run Global New Light of Myanmar, Aung San Suu Kyi paid “less than reasonable land rental rates,” and her residence was built using cash contributions from the public. The report also claimed that the ousted Myanmar leader accepted $600,000 and 11.4 kg of gold.

Her lawyer dismissed the accusations of bribery and corruption as “ridiculous” and “baseless”.

In my experience . . . Khin Maung Zhao said, “I have never met any statesman more honest and incorruptible than Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. “She may have flaws, but personal greed and corruption are not (among) her traits.”

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