Former prisoner of conscience and Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi has entered the Burmese parliament, marking an historic step towards democracy in the country after 25 years of totalitarian rule
The leader of the National League for Democracy (NLD), Aung San Suu Kyi took her seat as an elected member on 2 May 2012 after being denied for years by the country’s military regime. The NLD said that they would make a strong push towards reducing military power in government.
The move is the result of a resounding by-election victory in April 2012. Despite not yet having enough seats to claim any significant power, the NLD see it as a positive step that is expected to bring further public support in the run-up to the 2015 general election.
The 66-year-old won a landslide election victory in 1990 but this was overruled by the Burmese military, who held Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest for much of the last two decades.
With her newfound freedom Aung San Suu Kyi will visit the UK in June on her first trip outside Burma for 24 years. During the visit she will address the houses of parliament, receive an honorary degree from Oxford university and visit her sons who live in the UK.
Author: Tom Lawson