A Myanmar court sentenced the country’s ousted leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, to an additional three years in prison with hard labor on Friday. The November 2020 election results saw a stunning victory for Aung San Suu Kyi and the National League for Democracy, (NLD).
Suu Kyi, who was sentenced last month to six years imprisonment for four corruption charges, was convicted. The politician, aged 77, still faces additional charges. If she is convicted on any of these cases, it could lead to a near 200 year sentence.
Numerous rights groups have condemned this new verdict for being politically motivated. According to the Asian Network for Free Elections, (ANFREL), this sentence was changed. “delivered a clear message that the military junta has no interest in upholding democracy, human rights, and the rule of law”In the country
“In light of the latest development, we reiterate our call for the Myanmar military junta to immediately and unconditionally release all political prisoners in the country, drop the politically motivated charges against NLD leaders and members, activists, journalists and [electoral] officials, respect the results of the 2020 elections, and reinstate the civilian rule,”In a statement, the group stated.
Suu Kyi, dubbed a ‘democracy icon’ by the media, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 for her work to bring democracy to Myanmar. She was also a victim of abuses in human rights while she was at the helm, as was her treatment for the Rohingya ethnic minority. This was described by many rights organizations as “a grave violation of humanity.” “genocide.”
The politician became the first – and, so far, the only – State Counsellor of Myanmar back in 2016, securing a comfortable re-election in late 2020. She was overthrown in February 2021 by the country’s military, which accused the civilian government of coming into power thanks to massive election fraud.
Suu Kyi, along with her co-politicians strongly deny all allegations made by the military. A brief period in Myanmar under civilian control was ended by the coup. The military ruled the country from the mid 1960s until 2011.
The coup prompted months-long mass-protests across the country, with Suu Kyi’s supporters engaging in clashes against the military. According to different monitoring groups, the violence caused more than 2,000 deaths. However, the military insists that the total was exaggerated.
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