A SPECIAL court in Myanmar’s capital sentenced the country’s ousted leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, to four years in prison on Monday after finding her guilty of incitement and violating coronavirus restrictions, a legal official said. The sentencing was the first in a series of cases in which the 76-year-old Nobel laureate is being prosecuted since the army seized power on Feb 1, preventing her National League for Democracy party from starting a second five-year term in office. The verdict in another case against her is expected next week. If found guilty in all the cases she faces, she could be sentenced to more than 100 years in prison.
The court on Monday did not make clear whether Suu Kyi would be sent to prison for the two convictions or placed under house arrest, the legal official said. In her long struggle for democracy, she has served 15 years of house arrest starting in 1989. The incitement case involved statements posted on her party’s Facebook page after she and other party leaders had already been detained by the military, while the coronavirus charge involved a campaign appearance ahead of elections in November last year which her party overwhelmingly won. The army, whose allied party lost many seats in the election, claimed massive voting fraud, but independent election observers did not detect any major irregularities.