Myanmar’s ousted president faces 2 new charges: Lawyer

(CNA) – Myanmar’s ousted President Win Myint is facing two new charges, his lawyer said on Wednesday (Mar 3), including a breach of the constitution that is punishable by up to three years in prison.

Win Myint was arrested on Feb 1 along with Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi just hours before the military seized power in a coup. Win Myint is also facing charges over violating protocols to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Lawyer Khin Maung Zaw said Win Myint’s trial date is not known.

The military government has also charged Aung San Suu Kyi with several offences that critics say are trumped up merely to keep her jailed and potentially prevent her from participating in the election promised in a year’s time by the military.

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Tuesday said the coup is “an enormous tragic step back” for Myanmar, and the arrests and charging of Aung San Suu Kyi and much of her party leadership would not solve the problem.

“You really have to get back, release Aung San Suu Kyi, negotiate with her and her team, and work out a peaceful way forward for Myanmar,” he said during a recording of an interview with the BBC. The interview transcript was provided by Singapore’s Ministry of Communications and Information.

Southeast Asian foreign ministers on Tuesday urged a halt to violence and the start of talks on a peaceful solution in Myanmar.

In the first meeting of ASEAN foreign ministers since the coup, Myanmar’s top diplomat briefed other foreign ministers in the 10-member grouping through a video conference, according to the meeting’s agenda.