Select Page

Aung San Suu Kyi’s 15 years under house arrest

Following is a summary of her time in detention:

1989-1995: The junta places Suu Kyi under house arrest in July 1989, 10 months after she helped form the National League for Democracy (NLD) in the wake of national pro-democracy protests crushed by the military government.

Despite her confinement, the NLD scores a landslide victory in 1990 elections, but the junta does not recognise the result.

One year later, she is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, accepted by her sons on her behalf. She is released in July 1995, after six years of being confined to her home in Yangon.

2000-2002: Suu Kyi is again placed under house arrest in September 2000, after several face-offs with the regime, including attempts to leave Rangoon on party business in defiance of the junta’s orders.

Landmark secret talks on “national reconciliation” begin in October 2000, brokered by UN envoy Razali Ismail.

Since May 30, 2003: Suu Kyi, travelling in a convoy with NLD members in northern Burma, is attacked in an ambush apparently organised by a regime frightened by her continued popularity.

The junta says four people are killed in the attack but the NLD puts the toll at nearly 100. Suu Kyi is arrested along with many party activists.

In September, she is moved back to her Rangoon home and placed under house arrest for a third time.

May 2009: Shortly before her expected release, Suu Kyi is put on trial over a bizarre incident in which an American man swims uninvited to her lakeside home. She is sentenced to another 18 months of house arrest.

Suu Kyi writes to junta chief Than Shwe offering suggestions on getting sanctions lifted, marking an easing of her stance after years of advocating punitive measures against the ruling generals.

Her party boycotts the country’s first poll in 20 years, held on November 7, saying the rules are unfair. The NLD is disbanded by the authorities.

November 12, 2010: Suu Kyi is freed from detention.