Suu Kyi Tells US Audience of Crippling Power of Fear

Posted October 26th, 2011 at 5:05 am (UTC-5)
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Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has told an American audience that freedom from fear is the key that opens to door to other liberties.

The former political prisoner made the comment in recorded remarks presented late Tuesday to an audience at the University of Michigan, where she was honored for her human rights work. Aung San Suu Kyi, who still cannot travel freely from Burma, also took questions from the audience using Skype.

The Associated Press quoted Aung San Suu Kyi saying fear paralyzes people, rendering them dumb and passive. She said people must overcome the fear of speaking out before they can fight for other important freedoms.

The university presented Aung San Suu Kyi in absentia with a medal presented annually to outstanding humanitarians.

The medal is named for Raoul Wallenberg, a one-time University of Michigan student who, as a Swedish diplomat during World War II, saved thousands of Jews from being sent to Nazi death camps.