Aung San Suu Kyi Photos: Meet Myanmar’s First Female Leader


Aung San Suu Kyi was born in June, 1942 in Rangoon, Burma, the former capital of Burma and now known as Myanmar. Her father, Aung San, was the general who fought against the British during World War II. She was given his last name by his second wife, and his wife, who died young, proposed naming her Khin Myint Myint. In 1953, Aung San was killed during a Japanese invasion in Burma. Suu Kyi’s mother died in 1956.

Aung San Suu Kyi’s arrival in the U.S. was difficult. She was pariahed throughout her university days, so it took her almost a decade after graduation in 1972 to be admitted to graduate school. She then worked as a professor of English and comparative literature at Cambridge University, before returning to her hometown. She did one more year of graduate school in London, but moved back to Rangoon in 1976. Suu Kyi married the English academic Michael Aris in 1978. They had two children before they separated in 1989. Suu Kyi also married another Englishman, Kim Aris, in 1991. He divorced her in 2003, though the two have remained close.

Suu Kyi was released from detention in late 2010. She was barred from running for the presidency of her country after a 2014 referendum abolished the one-person, one-vote system that had guaranteed the president a position of power and limited anyone else to being a minister, state minister or a legislator. Suu Kyi spent 15 years under house arrest, from 1991 to 2010, before she was released. Now aged 72, Suu Kyi is reported to be on her way to Washington to meet President Donald Trump.

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