Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar opposition leader, received her first passport in 24 years for her planned trip to Europe. After 22 years of military junta rule, political reforms yielded to a civilian government and led to Suu Kyi’s election to parliament.
Suu Kyi leads the opposition National League for Democracy. She had been under house arrest for 15 years, depriving her of attending the awarding of the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize and seeing her British husband, Michael Aris, when he died from cancer in 1999. She declined previous opportunities to go abroad fearing that she would be exiled from Myanmar.
Suu Kyi plans to visit Norway and Britain. She also had invitations from UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and British Prime Minister David Cameron. Suu Kyi says that having her passport with the opportunity of leaving the country and return is a sign of “great progress”.