Aung San Suu Kyi’s trial has been a farce | Letter

Friends and family of Myanmar’s ousted civilian leader react to her jailing at the hands of the ruling junta

We, the friends and relations of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi in England, would like to applaud the Guardian for your article (Myanmar’s junta condemned over guilty verdicts in Aung San Suu Kyi trial, 6 December). We cannot remain silent any longer about the situation there and that of Daw Suu in particular. Since the illegal coup on 1 February by the military, all the progress achieved under the National League for Democracy has been undone, leaving the country close to complete collapse.

The farcical nature of the trial of Aung San Suu Kyi is reminiscent of a Whitehall comedy. She has been convicted of “incitement”, when her only offence was to oppose obedience to the illegal regime while she herself was gagged and held incommunicado in an unknown place of detention. This trial was judged fair by the army spokesman, who needs to be asked why the hearings had to be held in secret, with her lawyers banned from any reporting of proceedings.

Prospect Burma’s Autumn 2021 newsletter says: “The health and education systems have collapsed. Schools and universities have been closed for some 18 months. Over 42,000 public health workers have been fired, or quit their jobs in support of the Civil Disobedience Movement; over 200,000 staff have quit or have been dismissed in the education sector; over 1.7 million people are refugees or internally displaced, plus a further 250,000 civilians forced from their homes.”

We now ask that world bodies, particularly the UN and Asean, continue to boycott the regime; that all countries put pressure on the junta to step down and cease to terrorise their own people; that Aung San Suu Kyi, the legal president, Win Myint, together with an estimated 10,000 political prisoners, should be released at once; and that the army should hand power back to the democratically elected government.
Marie-Laure Aris, Christopher Gore-Booth, Adrian and Lucinda Phillips

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