Aung San Suu Kyi moved from prison to house arrest in Myanmar due to heatwave, says military junta

 Aung San Suu Kyi  (REUTERS)
Aung San Suu Kyi (REUTERS)

Myanmar's jailed former leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been moved from prison to house arrest as a health measure due to a heat wave, the country’s military government has said.

Ms Suu Kyi, 78, and Win Myint, the 72-year-old former president of her ousted government, were among the elderly and infirm prisoners moved from out of prison because of the severe heat, a military spokesperson told foreign media late on Tuesday.

The move has not yet been publicly announced in Myanmar.

Ms Suu Kyi has been serving a 27-year prison term in the capital Naypyitaw on a variety of criminal convictions her supporters and rights groups say were fabricated for political reasons.

In September last year, Aung San Suu Kyi’s son Kim Aris said she had such serious gum disease that she was struggling to eat.Win Myint was serving an eight-year prison sentence in Taungoo in Myanmar's Bago region.

A nationwide conflict in Myanmar began after the army in 2021 ousted the elected government, imprisoned Ms Suu Kyi and began suppressing nonviolent protests that sought a return to democratic rule.

Myanmar's meteorological department said Naypyitaw saw temperatures of 39 degrees Celsius (102.2 degrees Fahrenheit) on Tuesday afternoon.

Spokesperson Zaw Min Tun did not say exactly where the released prisoners were being moved to. Before being sent to prison, Suu Kyi was reportedly held in a military safe house inside an army base.

Other prisoners were released for the Thingyan New Year holiday, state-run MRTV television announced on Wednesday, but it wasn't immediately clear if those released included pro-democracy activists and political prisoners who were detained for protesting army rule.

MRTV said that the head of the ruling military council, Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, had pardoned 3,303 prisoners, including 28 foreigners who will be deported from Myanmar. He also reduced sentences for others. Mass amnesties on the holiday are not unusual in Myanmar.

Ms Suu Kyi was given to the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 for her non-violent struggle for democracy and human rights.