After weeks of delays in her case, a judge on Monday ordered Myanmar’s deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi to appear in court for the first time on May 24, according to her counsel.
The Nobel Laureate has not been seen in public since she was detained in a February 1 coup in which the military deposed her and re-established its rule.
She was then hit with a slew of lawsuits, and her legal team has been fighting tooth and nail to get a private meeting with their client.
Suu Kyi has expressed her dissatisfaction with the pace of the proceedings at several court hearings in the capital, Naypyidaw, which she attended via video conferencing from her house arrest.
A judge requested that her cases be heard with her present in a special courtroom near her home at the most recent hearing on Monday.
“She will appear in person in court on May 24,” lawyer Khin Maung Zaw told AFP.
He did warn, however, that the question of not being able to meet privately with her remains unresolved.
“The problem is not solved yet because the police did not answer on whether they can arrange our meeting,” he said, adding that private counsel is “the right of the defendant”.
Since her conviction, the 75-year-old former chief has been convicted six times.
Last year’s election campaign was marred by violations of coronavirus limits, as well as the possession of unlicensed walkie-talkies.
The most important allegation is that she violated the country’s colonial-era Official Secrets Act, which is currently being heard in a court in Yangon’s commercial center.
The junta has also accused her of corruption, claiming she obtained bribes in the form of gold bars and cash, though no charges have been brought.
The junta has repeatedly justified her detention and the coup as a means of defending democracy, claiming that her National League for Democracy Party, which won a landslide victory in November’s elections, committed electoral fraud.
Min Aung Hlaing, the army’s commander-in-chief, now leads the junta, which controls Myanmar’s legislative, executive, and judicial powers.
Hundreds of thousands have defied junta rule to demand a return to democracy and the release of Aung San Suu Kyi after the coup.
Security forces have responded with live fire, killing at least 780 civilians in violent crackdowns, according to a local monitoring group.
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN