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Myanmar: Detained leader Aung San Suu Kyi faces new charge under official secrets law

News Agencies | Updated on: 2 April 2021, 10:13 IST

After over two months since the military coup in Myanmar on February 1, the country's detained civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi was slapped with another charge on Thursday under the official secrets law.

Since her detainment, Suu Kyi is facing a total of five charges, including the latest one, Kyodo News reported.

The charge is related to the indictment of Australian economist Sean Turnell, Suu Kyi's former adviser, who has been detained for violating the country's colonial-era official secrets act, informed her lawyer Min Min Soe.

The lawyer further informed that Suu Kyi was additionally charged under the official secrets act, together with four others, at a Yangon court a week ago and the next hearing will be on April 8.

Suu Kyi has been indicted on four other charges since the coup. She was charged for illegally importing walkie-talkies, flouting coronavirus restrictions, spreading information that fanned social unease, and receiving USD 600,000 and gold from the then chief minister of the Yangon Region, reported Kyodo News.

For these charges, she attended a court hearing in Myanmar's capital Naypyitaw through videoconference Thursday where her lawyer defended her and said all the charges were fabricated. The next court hearing on these charges will be held on April 12.

On February 1, Myanmar's military overthrew the government and declared a year-long state of emergency hours before the newly-elected parliament was due to convene. Suu Kyi and President Win Myint, along with other top officials accused of election fraud, have been placed under house arrest.

The coup triggered mass protests in the country which were met by the junta with deadly violence, resulting in more than 500 people being killed since then.

UK Foreign Minister Dominic Raab on Thursday announced new sanctions against military-linked conglomerate Myanmar Economic Corporation (MEC) for its involvement in serious human rights violations.


Also Read: Myanmar's death toll since military coup on February 1 crosses 500

First published: 2 April 2021, 10:06 IST