Myanmar: Leading Muslim lawyer Ko Ni assassinated at Yangon airport

BBC - A leading lawyer and adviser to Aung San Suu Kyis National League for Democracy (NLD) party has been shot dead at Yangon airport in Myanmar.

Ko Ni was shot in the head on Sunday after arriving from an international trip. A taxi driver was also shot.

A suspect has been detained but there are no details on the motive.

Ko Ni was one of few prominent Muslims in a country dominated by Buddhists. It is not clear if that was a factor in his death.

Assassinations are extremely rare in Myanmar.

A student activist dating back to the uprising of 1988, Ko Ni was a political prisoner and then, once released, a senior lawyer and adviser to the NLD.


A vocal Muslim in a Buddhist country - by Jonah Fisher, BBC News, Yangon

A still picture taken by the taxi rank of Yangons airport captured the moment of assassination.

A man wearing a pink shirt, shorts and flip flops points a pistol to the back of the head of Ko Ni, who is holding a small child.

Moments later Myanmars most prominent Muslim lawyer was dead and shortly afterwards a taxi driver, too, who had chased the attacker.

Pictures posted on social media showed the police as they caught the attacker, his head and legs smeared in blood. Hes been named as Kyi Lin, a 53-year-old from Mandalay.

A student activist dating back to the uprising of 1988, Ko Ni was a political prisoner and then, once released, a senior lawyer and adviser to Aung San Suu Kyis political party. An expert on constitutional law, he worked on the NLDs plans to amend Myanmars military drafted charter.

Last year he helped found the Myanmar Muslim Lawyers Association and spoke of the need to stand up for the rights of Muslim citizens. That may have made him some powerful enemies.

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