Aung San Suu Kyi

Biography of Aung San Suu Kyi

Aung San Suu Kyi is a politician, writer and human rights activist, born on June 19, 1945, in Rangoon, Burma.

Aung San Suu Kyi had two brothers, Aung San Lin, who passed away at age 8, and Aung San Oo, who years later would emigrate to become an American citizen. Her name comes from three relatives: “Aung San” for her father, “Suu” for her paternal grandmother, and “Kyi” for her mother, Khin Kyi.

On the other hand, his father, Aung San, was from the Modern Burmese Army and negotiated with the British Empire, the independence of Burma in 1947, before being assassinated that same year. His mother, Khin Kyi, after the death of her son, moved to a quiet area 10 kilometers from the Burmese capital to raise her other children.

In 1960 the mother of Suu Kyi she was appointed Ambassador of Burma to India and Nepal, so she went with her.

In 1964 she received her Bachelor of Politics from Lady Shri Ram College, New Delhi, India. In order to continue his studies, he went to England and in 1967 he obtained his Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from St. Hugh’s College, Oxford. After graduating, he emigrated to New York, United States, where he worked in the Secretariat of the United Nations (UN) for three years.

Aung San Suu Kyi is fluent in four languages: Burmese, English, French, and Japanese.

On January 1, 1972, she married British professor Michael Vaillancourt Aris, settling in Oxford, where her two children were born: Alexander (1973) and Kim (1977).

He made himself known as a pro-democracy political leader in Burma in the popular revolt of 1988. Since his first house arrest in 1989, he spent 15 years in jail, in a 21-year period, since he began his political activism.

Following his release in 2010, he has held a series of public positions in Burma for the political betterment of his country and its people.

In the 2015 elections, Aung San Suu Kyi tried to run for the presidency, but the current Constitution prevents her because she is a widow and mother of foreigners.

Popular revolt of 1988

In April 1988, Aung San Suu Kyi, after 18 years of expatriation, decided to return to Burma to care for her mother who was seriously ill. And to put together a network of libraries that would support his project to preserve the memory of his father, taking advantage of his stay in Burma.

But he found a country involved in large demonstrations for democracy, which the regime in power tried to placate with violence. On August 8, 1988, a series of protests and demonstrations against the government began, for which reason the popular revolt of 1988 was called Uprising 8888.

For this, on August 26, Suu Kyi she gave her first political speech, before half a million people, who saw in her a face and a voice for popular aspirations for democracy. His presence instilled confidence in the protests and Aung San Suu Kyi began to tour the country to consolidate the protest movement that was caused by this. popular revolt of 1988.

East Uprising 8888 It ended on September 18, with a bloody military coup, given by General Saw Maung, who offered free elections to defuse the protest. Aung San Suu Kyi had emerged as a political leader, fighting peacefully, without seeking confrontation and without provoking an Army with shoot-to-kill orders.

On September 27, Aung San Suu Kyi together with two generals who deserted the regime, they founded the National League for Democracy (NLD). That same day, the mother of Suu KyiAt the age of 76, overcome by the illness that had brought her back to her country.

Suu Kyi was appointed Secretary General of the National League for Democracy and continued to lead demonstrations to demand respect for Human Rights in Burma.

Two decades of continuous house arrests

Aung San Suu Kyi was persecuted and harassed passing more than two decades of continuous house arrests:

  • July 20, 1989: Placed under her first house arrest in Rangoon, under martial law that allowed detention without trial, for three years. Period that lasted until July 10, 1995.
  • September 23, 2000: She was placed under house arrest until May 6, 2002, when she was released after 19 months.
  • May 30, 2003: After the Depayin massacre, she was kept in secret detention for more than three months, before being returned to her house arrest.
  • May 25, 2007: His house arrest was extended by a year, despite a direct appeal by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to General Than Shwe.
  • May 27, 2008: House arrest was extended for another year, which is illegal under international law and the laws of Burma.
  • August 11, 2009: His house arrest was extended for an additional 18 months, for “rape” due to the May 2009 uprising.
  • November 13, 2010: It was the end of her house arrest and she was definitively released.

Aung San Suu Kyi was one of the best known political prisoners in the world, due to the many years in which she was under house arrest.

Positions held by Aung San Suu Kyi

After his release, within his political career, the positions held by Aung San Suu Kyi were:

  • Member of the Burmese House of Representatives, since 2012.
  • Minister of Education and Energy, from March 30 to April 6, 2016.
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs of Burma and State Councilor since April 6, 2016.

Awards and Recognitions to Aung San Suu Kyi

For all their work in favor of human rights and democracy, the awards and recognitions to Aung San Suu Kyi have been:

  • In 1990 he received the Rafto Prize for Human Rights and Democracy and the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought.
  • In 1991 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
  • In 1992, he received the Jawaharlal Nehrupara Prize for international understanding, awarded by the Government of India and the Simón Bolívar International Prize, by the Government of Venezuela.
  • In 1993 he received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Oxford.
  • In 2005 he was awarded the Olof Palme Prize.
  • In 2006 he received the Four Freedoms Award from the Roosevelt Institute in New York.
  • In 2007, the Government of Canada made her an honorary citizen of that country, being the fourth person to receive this honor.
  • In 2011 she was awarded the Wallenberg medal.
  • In 2012 the Government of Pakistan gave him the Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Award for Democracy.
  • On September 19, 2012, he was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal, which is one of the highest civil honors in the United States.

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