THE nation’s junta again postponed court proceedings against deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi, her lawyers said, as they fought for permission to visit her 12 weeks after she was detained.
Myanmar has been in turmoil since the military ousted the Nobel laureate in a Feb 1 coup, shunting the country back into junta rule after a brief experiment with democracy.
Suu Kyi has been under house arrest, with the junta charging her with six cases, including for sedition and having unlicensed walkie-talkies.
But movement on her case was once again delayed until May 10, her lawyer Min Min Soe said yesterday after a hearing.
Twelve weeks since Suu Kyi was detained, Min Min Soe said they still had not received permission to meet their client face to face – one of many hurdles the team had faced.
“When the judge asked (police) which stage they had reached, they replied that they couldn’t say specifically, ” she said, adding that Suu Kyi was frustrated by the slow pace.
“I think she is not getting access to news and television. I do not think she knows the current situation in the country, ” she said.
Besides not being able to meet with Suu Kyi, junta-imposed mobile data shutdowns have also prevented video conferencing in previous hearings.
The most serious charge Suu Kyi faces falls under Myanmar’s official secrets law, with a hearing due in Yangon on May 6.
Nationwide protests continued yesterday, with demonstrators holding signs that said “Free our leaders” and waving red flags emblazoned with a golden peacock – the symbol of Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy Party.
Meanwhile, pro-democracy activists have called on people to stop paying electricity bills and agricultural loans, and to keep their children away from school, scorning the top general’s pledge at a regional summit to end the post-coup crisis.
This came a day after Senior General Min Aung Hlaing reached an agreement at an Asean summit in Indonesia.
The junta chief did not submit to calls for the release of political prisoners, including Suu Kyi, and the Asean accord lacked any timeline for ending the crisis.
“All of us, people in townships, wards and then regions and states must work together to make a
successful boycott against the military junta, ” activist Khant Wai
Phyo said in a speech at a protest in the central town of Monywa on Sunday.
“We don’t participate in their systems, we don’t cooperate with them.”
Activists criticised the agreement that came out of the Asean meeting, a so-called five-point consensus that included an end to violence, starting a dialogue among all parties, accepting aid, and appointing a special Asean envoy who would be allowed to visit myanmar. — Agencies