Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and U Win Myint were sentenced for the final cases: 1.5 million refugees fleeing the war in Myanmar

Myanmar Spring Chronicle – December 30 Scenes
MoeMaKa, December 31 2022
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and U Win Myint were sentenced for the final cases: 1.5 million refugees fleeing the war in Myanmar

After almost 2 years of prosecution in more than a dozen cases, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was sentenced to a total of 33 years in prison. The military council that ordered the punishment did not expect it and those in the political field did not believe that the total sentence of 33 years after the 7 years of imprisonment imposed one day before the end of the calendar year was confirmed. These figures are not in accordance with the law, and everyone has already assumed that the military council ordered and imposed these punishments from behind.

When the ASEAN Special Envoy came to meet with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi this year, the military council refused on the grounds that she was still facing trial. The military council said that the meeting would be considered when the cases were decided. Now that the cases are over, there is a possibility that the ASEAN Special Envoy, who will take over next year, may make another request, and it remains to be seen how the military council will respond. The military council has designated NUG, CRPH, and NUCC as terrorist organizations and has denied the possibility of dialogue with them. And again, it is a matter to be considered whether the NUG, CRPH and NUCC will engage in dialogue even if the military council offers to hold one. 


We will have to wait and see whether Indonesia, which will take over the rotating chairmanship of ASEAN in 2023, will be able to force the military council to implement the 5-Point Consensus of the ASEAN agreement, more than Cambodia, which took the role last year. There is also a question as to whether Aung San Suu Kyi is still the center of Myanmar politics.


On the other hand, detaining and convicting Daw Aung San Suu Kyi using the court by finding fault with the activities of the NLD government during 2016 to 2020 after handing over power to it as it won the 2015 election, and by the alleged 2020 election fraud. It can also be said that the military council’s intention is to put Daw Aung San Suu Kyi in prison for a period of time so that she cannot return to the political stage.


There are still unanswered questions regarding Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s relationship with the NUG after the NUG government is formed on April 17, 2021, as well as her support for the armed political trend. Additionally, it is unclear how much support she has for the implementation of NUG governments based in neighboring Thailand and other nations. It remains to be seen whether Daw Aung San Suu Kyi can become someone who can orchestrate and decide actual policy reforms in 2023, rather than a figurehead political leader used to mobilize people for political change in Myanmar.

Another piece of news for today is that almost 2 years after the military coup, the number of people displaced by war in Myanmar has reached 1.5 million, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency. There were only around 400,000 to 500,000 refugees prior to the military takeover, but after the military coup, fighting flared up between newly emerged armed organizations, some ethnic armed groups that had signed a ceasefire agreement, and the military council, increasing the number of refugees to over 1 million. There are many difficulties, obstacles and limitations in providing humanitarian assistance to the 1.5 million refugees, and there are many consequences, such as the loss of agricultural production capacity of the growing refugee population of 1 million, deaths, and injuries.

The refugee problem is not just a temporary problem for those fleeing the war; there are also issues of education, health, and livelihood that have been destroyed by the war, and it will take years to put something broken back together.