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Suu Kyi appears in Myanmar court after long public absence

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Myanmar’s ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi appeared in court in person on Monday, her first appearance since a coup at the beginning of February, to face a charge of “incitement to sedition.’’

The sedition charge was the most serious she had faced, but she was also accused of violating a state secrets law and breaking Coronavirus containment measures.

Defence lawyer Maung Maung said lawyers were able to meet with Suu Kyi separately before the hearing and they discussed the legal matter.

The 75-year-old had been under house arrest since the coup.

He told dpa that Suu Kyi was in good health.

Her next court hearing was scheduled for June 7.

While Suu Kyi has answered questions in court by video link over recent weeks, her lawyers have been unable to meet her in person.

A special courtroom had been set up for the hearing in the capital Naypyidaw, not far from Suu Kyi’s home, lawyer Min Min Soe told dpa.

Nationwide protests against the coup have been met with fierce army reprisals that left hundreds of people dead.

In an interview published on Saturday by Chinese-language broadcaster Phoenix, Myanmar’s military ruler, Min Aung Hlaing claimed the media had vastly overstated the number of dead, putting it at “around 300.’’

According to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners monitoring group, at least 818 people have been killed so far, while more than 5,300 have been detained.

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