Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi and other high-ranking figures in the ruling party were arrested in an early morning raid, the ruling National League for Democracy spokesman said on Monday

Soldiers were deployed outside City Hall in Myanmar’s capital, Yangon, following the reported arrest of Suu Kyi and other civilian leaders, a witness contacted by phone said

The witness said that a dozen soldiers stood in front of the building where the city administration is located while several military trucks and vans stood nearby

What is increasingly appearing as a military coup came after days of escalating tensions between the civilian government and the powerful military following an election that the army claims was fraudulent

Spokesman Myo Nyunt told Reuters by phone that Suu Kyi, President Win Myint and other leaders had been “kidnapped” early in the morning

“I want to tell our people not to act rashly and I want them to act according to the law,” he said, adding that he expected to be arrested himself. Reuters was unable to contact him later / p>

Telephone lines to Naypyitaw, the capital, were inaccessible in the early hours of Monday morning. Parliament was supposed to sit there on Monday after an election in November that the NLD won in a landslide

The state media in Myanmar, MRTV, has technical problems and cannot broadcast, the network said on Monday, just hours after the high-ranking government officials were arrested

“Due to the current communication difficulties, we respectfully inform you that the regular programs of MRTV and Myanmar Radio cannot be broadcast,” said Myanmar Radio and Television in a post on its Facebook page

An NLD lawmaker, who asked not to be named for fear of retaliation, said another detainee was Han Thar Myint, a member of the party’s central executive committee

The 75-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner Suu Kyi came to power after a landslide election victory in 2015 that followed decades of house arrest in a struggle for democracy that made her an international icon

Their international standing was damaged after hundreds of thousands of Rohingya fled army operations in 2017 to seek refuge in Myanmar’s western state of Rakhine However, she is still hugely popular at home

Myanmar’s military announced on Saturday that it would protect and comply with the constitution and act in accordance with the law after comments earlier in the week raised fears of a coup

The Myanmar Electoral Commission has denied the military’s allegations of electoral fraud, stating that there are no errors large enough to undermine the credibility of the vote

The constitution reserves 25 percent of the seats in parliament for the military and the control of three key ministries in the administration of Suu Kyi

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Source: https://www.smh.com.au/world/asia/myanmar-leader-aung-san-suu-kyi-detained-20210201-p56ycu.html