UN slams ‘politically motivated’ Suu Kyi conviction in Myanmar

It closes yet another door to political dialogue: UN rights chief

The UN rights chief on Monday slammed the Myanmar junta over the conviction and sentencing of ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi to four years in prison, demanding her release.

“The conviction of the State Counsellor following a sham trial in secretive proceedings before a military-controlled court is nothing but politically motivated,” Michelle Bachelet said in a statement.

“It is not only about arbitrary denial of her freedom — it closes yet another door to political dialogue.”

Ms. Suu Kyi, 76, has been detained since the Generals staged a coup and ousted her government on February 1, ending the country’s brief period of democracy.

She has since been hit with a series of charges, including violating the official secrets act, corruption and electoral fraud, and she faces decades in jail if convicted on all counts.

On Monday, Ms. Suu Kyi was sentenced to two years for incitement against the military and another two years for breaching a natural disaster law relating to COVID-19.

Former President Win Myint was also sentenced to four years on the same charges.

Last month, Than Naing, former planning minister of Kayin State, and Nan Khin Htwe Myint, former Chief Minister of Kayin State, were sentenced to 90 and 75 years behind bars on corruption charges, she pointed out.

“The military is attempting to instrumentalise the courts to remove all political opposition,” she said.

“But these cases cannot provide a legal veneer to the illegitimacy of the coup and military rule.”

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