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Aung San Suu Kyi charged with breaching import-export laws

By Tan Hui Yee, The Straits Times

Myanmar’s military government has filed criminal charges against civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi for breaches of import-export laws, according to a police document.

She has been remanded in detention until Feb 15, the document said.

It said the military had raided her home and found hand-held radios that were illegally imported and used without permission.

Military rule was reimposed in Myanmar on Monday (Feb 1) when soldiers detained Ms Suu Kyi, 75, head of the National League for Democracy party (NLD), and other lawmakers in a series of dawn raids.

Ms Suu Kyi is said to be under house arrest at her residence in the capital Naypyidaw.

The charge against her carries a maximum sentence of three years in jail and/or a fine.

Charges were also filed against President Win Myint, 69, who is accused of breaching the Natural Disaster Management Law.

Police documents say the president had breached coronavirus restrictions by taking part in a campaign event in September which drew hundreds of people. The offence also carries a maximum jail term of three years.

The chair of the Asean Parliamentarians for Human Rights, Charles Santiago, described the charges as ludicrous.

“This is an absurd move by the junta to try to legitimise their illegal power grab from Myanmar’s democratically-elected government,” he said in a Facebook post.

Army chief Min Aung Hlaing seized power after alleging there was fraud in the November election, which the NLD won by a landslide. The electoral commission had earlier rejected the allegations of fraud and said the vote was fair.


Top: A police document said the military raided Ms Aung San Suu Kyi’s home and found hand-held radios that were illegally imported. Photo: EPA-EFE and published by Straits Times


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