Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi feels the junta’s latest case against her, which may see her behind bars for five years, is ‘totally unfair,’ one of her lawyers said Friday.
Suu Kyi stands accused of allowing US national John William Yettaw to swim to her lakeside house-cum-prison on May 3 and stay there uninvited until swimming away on the night of May 5.
She has been accused of breaking the terms of her detention for allowing Yettaw, a member of the Mormon sect who reportedly wanted to warn Suu Kyi of an assassination plot against her, to enter her compound without informing authorities.
Nyan Win, one of Suu Kyi’s legal team, met with the Nobel Peace Prize laureate Friday to brief her on the defence’s closing argument which will be heard in court on July 24.
Suu Kyi’s legal team has argued that Yettaw first tried to contact her in November, last year, to pass over a copy of the Book of Mormon, in an incident that was reported by Suu Kyi to authorities.
‘Daw (Mrs) Aung San Suu Kyi reported to authorities but nobody came into her house and no questions were asked at all about that,’ Nyan Win said. ‘She said it was totally unfair that government accused her of not cooperating with authorities,’ Nyan Win said.
Suu Kyi, the leader of the National League for Democracy (NLD) opposition party, was serving an indefinite detention period in her Yangon family compound when Yettaw performed his swimming feat.
On May 27, Myanmar authorities announced that her six-ear detention had expired. But now she faces a three-to-five-year prison sentence if found guilty of breaking the terms of that detention.
Suu Kyi’s trial began in a special court set up in Yangon’s notorious Insein Prison on May 11.
Critics have accused the military junta of using the case as a pretext to keep Suu Kyi in jail during a politically sensitive period leading up to a general election planned for next year.
Suu Kyi has spent 13 of the past 19 years in detention.
Suu Kyi’s NLD won the 1990 general election by a landslide but has been blocked from power by Myanmar’s junta for the past 19 years.
The new trial of Suu Kyi has sparked a chorus of protests from world leaders and even statements of concern from its regional allies in the Association of South-East Asian Nations.