Myanmar’s Suu Kyi Detained in Early-Morning Raid, Reuters Says

Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been detained in an early-morning raid, Reuters reported, a move that came amid fears of a coup due to rising tensions between her civilian government and the country’s powerful military.

Suu Kyi, President Win Myint and other leaders were “taken,” the report said, citing Myo Nyunt, a spokesman for the ruling National League for Democracy.

Efforts to reach spokespeople for the National League for Democracy were unsuccessful. Multiple media outlets reported that communications were down in the capital of Naypyitaw.

Political Tensions Flare in Myanmar, Sparking Fears of a Coup

Ever since Suu Kyi’s party won a landslide victory in the Nov. 8 poll, the military and its political factions have demanded authorities investigate its allegations of mass voting fraud. Myanmar’s election commission last week had labeled the vote — only the second free general election after decades of military rule — transparent and fair.

Top military leaders had hinted at seizing power, with the commander-in-chief last week floating the idea of revoking the constitution and a spokesman declining to rule out a coup. But the force said on Saturday the comments had been misunderstood and pledged to work in accordance with the law.

Myanmar’s military had retained wide powers under the constitution even after a shift to democracy a decade ago, which prompted the U.S. and European Union to lift sanctions on the Southeast Asian country. But initial optimism that sparked a wave of interest from foreign investors quickly dissipated due to a violent crackdown against Muslim Rohingyas that prompted accusations of “genocide” against Suu Kyi’s government.

The treatment of the Rohingyas has tainted the international image of Suu Kyi, who had won the Nobel Peace Prize while under house arrest during a military regime that effectively cut Myanmar off from the world.

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