Burma: Murdered Lawyer Was Working on Plan to Undercut Myanmar Military

March 14, 2017

FILE - Ko Ni, a prominent member of Myanmar's Muslim minority and legal adviser for Myanmar's ruling National League for Democracy, during an interview in Yangon, Jan. 13, 2016. Ko Ni was shot dead Jan. 29, 2017.

A close associate of murdered Myanmar lawyer Ko Ni says the constitutional expert was working on a plan to weaken the military’s political power when he was gunned down at Yangon’s airport soon after his return from a conference in Indonesia on January 29.

The revelation is likely to feed persistent suspicions – which have been denied – that the military had a role in the assassination.

Military still holds power

Despite handing over power to a civilian government led by the National League for Democracy (NLD) party of activist Aung San Suu Kyi, the Myanmar armed forces retain wide powers under a constitution it promulgated in 2008.

That constitution guarantees the military 25 percent of the seats in parliament and gives it a veto over any constitutional amendment. It also controls the Ministry of Home Affairs, giving it authority over much of the nation’s permanent bureaucracy.

Murdered lawyer Ko Ni may have found a loophole around the military.








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