Burma's top court says it will consider a request to reinstate more
defense witnesses in the trial of jailed opposition leader Aung San Suu
The Burmese Supreme Court said Wednesday Aung San Suu Kyi's lawyers can appeal a lower court's decision to bar two defense witnesses from testifying.
Defense lawyer Nyan Win welcomed the announcement by the military-led country's top court. He says the court is likely to set a date for the appeal hearing on Friday.
Aung San Suu Kyi is on trial for violating the terms of her house arrest by allowing an American to stay at her lakeside home after he swam there uninvited last month. A lower court hearing her case initially banned three of her four defense witnesses from giving testimony.
A Burmese appeals court reinstated a second witness last week, but upheld the ban on the other two.
The two barred defense witnesses are senior members of Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy.
Nyan Win says the upcoming appeal hearing is likely to further delay her trial, which was due to resume on June 26.
Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace laureate, faces five years in prison if convicted on the charges. The international community has condemned the trial, calling it a pretext for the Burmese military to keep her in detention through next year's elections.
On Tuesday, five United Nations human rights investigators denounced the trial for ignoring basic standards of justice.
Aung San Suu Kyi turns 64 years old on June 19. She has spent 13 of the last 19 years under house arrest and was transferred last month to Rangoon's notorious Insein prison, where her trial is taking place.
Burma has been under military rule since 1962. The National League for Democracy won elections in 1990, but the military refused to recognize the results.