Verdict for incitement charges against Suu Kyi expected at end of November

The final verdict concerning incitement charges against detained Myanmar civilian leaders including State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi will be delivered at the end of November, according to court sources.

The 76-year-old Suu Kyi, ousted president Win Myint, and former Naypyitaw mayor Myo Aung were detained on February 1 when the military seized power in a pre-dawn coup. 

In addition to 10 other charges—including several corruption offences—Suu Kyi has been charged under Section 505b of the Penal Code along with Win Myint and Myo Aung in relation to two statements denouncing the junta released by the National League for Democracy (NLD) party in the wake of the military takeover.

The date was announced by the judge presiding over the cases at a specially designated court in Naypyitaw’s Zabuthiri Township on Tuesday after the prosecution and defence teams submitted written closing arguments, court sources said.

“This is the very first verdict to be pronounced for the three accused,” one such source told Myanmar Now on the condition of anonymity. 

The junta imposed gag orders on the defence lawyers for Suu Kyi, Win Myint and Myo Aung. Myanmar Now has been unable to contact them for further information.

At Tuesday’s court hearing, the case filed by a civilian against Suu Kyi under Section 25 of the Disaster Management Law—for the alleged violation of public health restrictions during last year’s election campaign—was also heard.

Suu Kyi took the stand to testify before the court as a witness, the sources said. 

The next hearing is scheduled for November 23 and the NLD’s vice chair, Zaw Myint Maung, will testify on behalf of Suu Kyi, according to the sources. He is being detained in Obo Prison in Mandalay and is facing similar charges. 

On Tuesday, the junta also officially announced its move to prosecute a total of 16 individuals, including Suu Kyi, Win Myint, Myo Aung, Zaw Myint Maung as well as former election commissioners, for allegedly committing electoral fraud

Suu Kyi, Win Myint and Myo Aung reportedly told their lawyers that they had heard about these charges but had not been formally notified.

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