Saturday was the culmination of a 22-year journey “back into the wider human community” for Aung San Suu Kyi, the Burmese politician and activist who finally collected her Nobel Peace Prize, as the New York Times reports.
Suu Kyi accepted her award in front of a packed audience in Oslo, Norway, home of the Nobel committee, including the Norwegian royal family, and called for an end to the violence in her country that has killed 17 people this month.
Suu Kyi was first placed under first house arrest in 1990 by a military junta, less than a year after calling for a democratic government for Burma. She would spend most of the next two decades imprisoned at home. Winning the award in 1991, she said Saturday, “had made me real once again; it had drawn me back into the wider human community.”
In an interview with CBS News, she said there were times she felt physically tired, but never considered leaving the country, even when her husband, a British national, was dying from cancer.
“I think the country should be more important to everyone than our own personal and private feelings,” she said. In her acceptance speech, Suu Kyi said she and her supporters were working for Burma to be a free country, and not personal recognition.
Watch CBS News’ coverage of Suu Kyi’s award win below:
image of Aung San Suu Kyi via Agence France-Presse