Aung San Suu Kyi gets freedom of Dublin

Aung San Suu Kyi Image copyright AFP
Image caption Aung San Suu Kyi was freed in late 2010 after years of house arrest

Burma's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi is to receive the freedom of Dublin, 12 years after she was granted the award.

Ms Suu Kyi will travel to Dublin from Norway, where she collected the Nobel peace prize awarded in 1991.

She has spent much of the last 24 years under house arrest in Burma.

Thousands of supporters are expected to turn out to see Ms Suu Kyi deliver an open-air address, while Bono and Bob Geldof are to stage a tribute concert.

Also on the bill are singer Damien Rice, the Riverdance ensemble, actress Vanessa Redgrave and rapper Lupe Fiasco.

Ms Suu Kyi will be greeted at Dublin Airport by Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore before visiting President Michael D Higgins at Áras an Uachtaráin.

Her two-week-long European trip - seen as another milestone for Burma's political progress - includes visits to the UK, Switzerland, France and Norway.

It is her second recent overseas trip, after visiting Thailand in May.

Her decision to travel is seen as a sign of confidence in the government of President Thein Sein, who has pursued a course of reform since coming to power last year, in Burma's first elections in 20 years.

Ms Suu Kyi is the daughter of Burmese independence leader Aung San, who was assassinated in 1947.

She became the leader of Burma's pro-democracy movement when, after living abroad for many years, she returned to Burma in 1988, initially to look after her sick mother.

She never left the country, fearing its military rulers would not allow her to return and was unable to receive her Nobel Peace Prize in person, or be with her British husband, Michael Aris, when he died in 1999.

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