Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, a pro-democracy campaigner who was kept under house arrest for years by the country's military rulers, is due to receive the U.S. Congressional Gold Medal in Washington on Wednesday.
The honor is one of the highlights of a 17-day tour of the United States by Suu Kyi, who was freed in 2010 and elected to the Myanmar parliament this year, a historic moment in the incipient political reforms under way in the Southeast Asian nation.
Congress awarded the medal, its "highest expression of national appreciation for distinguished achievements and contributions," to Suu Kyi in May 2008, but she has only now been able to make her first visit to the United States in decadesÂ to receive it.
She joins a list of recipients that includes George Washington, Nelson Mandela and Frank Sinatra.
Over the next two weeks, Suu Kyi is scheduled to meet with high-level American officials, as well as democratic activists.FULL STORY