Myanmar’s ruling military junta filed a sixth charge against deposed civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Monday as demonstrations continued against the February 1 coup.
Min Min Soe, Suu Kyi’s lawyer, told reporters that his client was charged a second time for violating the country’s COVID-19 protocols during a court appearance via videoconference. Min Min Soe says Suu Kyi asked the court to allow her to meet with her lawyers in person during Monday’s session.
The 75-year-old Suu Kyi is already facing charges including having six handheld radios in her possession, the most serious of them a charge of breaking the country’s colonial-era secrets law that could put her in prison for 14 years if convicted.
Suu Kyi and several members of her civilian government have been detained since the military took control more than two months ago, saying there was widespread fraud in last November’s general election which Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy won in a landslide.
The coup has sparked daily mass demonstrations across Myanmar demanding the return of Suu Kyi and her elected government to power.
The junta has responded with ever-increasing violent and deadly crackdown against the demonstrators. The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, a nongovernmental monitoring organization, estimates that more than 700 people have been killed by the junta since the peaceful protests began, including more than 80 protesters killed Friday in the southern city of Bago, located more than 70 kilometers northeast of the country’s largest city, Yangon.