Aung San Suu Kyi Begins US Tour

Posted September 18th, 2012 at 4:00 am (UTC-5)
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Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi begins her 17-day visit to the United States in earnest Tuesday with events in Washington, including talks with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Aung San Suu Kyi, who traveled to Washington Monday, is also scheduled to deliver remarks as part of a discussion about Burma's democratic transition and challenges facing the country's future.

On Wednesday, lawmakers will present her with the Congressional Gold Medal, the nation's highest civilian honor.

While in Washington, the Nobel Peace Prize winner will make an appearance at the Voice of America.

Other stops on her visit include the states of California, New York and Indiana. Fort Wayne, Indiana is home to one of the country's largest Burmese-American communities.

Aung San Suu Kyi's visit coincides with next week's visit by Burmese President Thein Sein, who will address the United Nations General Assembly.

President Obama is considering relaxing some of the tough sanctions imposed on Burma because of the former military government's poor human rights record.

Conditions have improved since the nominally civilian government came to power last year, including freedom for hundreds of political prisoners. Aung San Suu Kyi, who spent nearly 20 years under house arrest, is now a member of the Burmese parliament.