Myanmar allows Suu Kyi to meet lawyers

May 31st, 2009 - 12:44 am ICT by IANS  

Yangon, May 30 (DPA) Myanmar’s opposition leader currently on trial for allegedly breaking the terms of her house arrest met her lawyers Saturday, one of the three lawyers said.
They met to discuss closing arguments with the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize laureate for about two hours at Insein Prison on the outskirts Yangon, said Nyan Win, one of her lawyers.

Nyan Win, who is also spokesman for the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD), which Suu Kyi leads, said final arguments by both the defence and prosecution are now scheduled for next Friday, having been pushed back from Monday.

The democracy advocate was moved to Insein Prison May 8 to stand trial for allegedly allowing a US national to swim May 3 to her home-cum-prison on Yangon’s Inya Lake. He departed on the night of May 5.

Suu Kyi has spent 14 of the past 20 years under house arrest in a country ruled by a military junta continually criticised for human rights abuses. She now faces another three to five years in jail if found guilty of breaking the terms of her latest, six-year detention.

Western leaders have criticised the current trial as a show trial that is designed to keep Suu Kyi out of the political scene while the junta stages a general election next year.

Some of Myanmar’s close allies in the Association of South-East Asian Nations have also raised concerns that the frail pro-democracy leader might face five more years of imprisonment, perhaps in Insein Prison, which is notorious for harsh treatment of inmates.

Suu Kyi, her two household aides and US national John William Yettaw stand accused of breaking Suu Kyi’s terms of house arrest as a result of Yettaw’s swim to her home.

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