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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Myanmar high court rejects Suu Kyi lawsuit challenging election laws
Tara Tighe at 7:30 AM ET

[JURIST] The Myanmar Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a lawsuit to repeal election laws [JURIST report] preventing pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] from participating in upcoming elections. The lawsuit was filed by Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) [party website] in response to the recently enacted laws, which have garnered criticism [JURIST report] for prohibiting persons with criminal records or overt religious affiliations from attaining candidacy in the upcoming elections. Suu Kyi has said that she believes the NLD should not participate [Reuters report] due to the restrictive nature of the election laws. The NLD will be required to decide whether to register for participation in the elections in the coming weeks.

Last month, Myanmar's Supreme Court dismissed Suu Kyi's latest appeal [JURIST report] to the 18-month extension of her house arrest. Suu Kyi appealed to the high court in November after a lower court found her guilty [JURIST reports] of violating the terms of her house arrest when she allowed an American to stay with her after he swam across a lake to her home. Suu Kyi, who has been in prison or under house arrest for 14 of the past 20 years, will be released in November [JURIST report], according to a government official, likely after the upcoming elections have taken place.

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