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Myanmar Court Sentences Suu Kyi to 3 More Years in Prison

FILE - In this Feb. 15, 2021, photo, a protester holds up a poster featuring Aung San Suu Kyi during a demonstration against the military coup at in front of the Central Bank of Myanmar in Yangon.

A court in military-ruled Myanmar sentenced ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi and Australian economist Sean Turnell to three years in prison Thursday for violating the country’s secrets act, according to people familiar with the proceedings.

The exact nature of the charges against Suu Kyi and Turnell have not been made public. State television said last year that Turnell had access to “secret state financial information.”

The maximum sentence they faced was 14 years.

Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong said in a statement Australia rejects the court’s ruling and calls for Turnell's immediate release.

“The Australian Government has consistently rejected the charges against Professor Turnell during the more than 19 months he had been unjustly detained by the Myanmar military regime,” Wong said.

Turnell served as an adviser to Suu Kyi’s government and was detained days after the February 2021 coup.

Suu Kyi was convicted in multiple earlier cases and given sentences totaling 20 years. She denied all the allegations against her.

Some information for this report came from The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse and Reuters.