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Brussels, 16 June 2012
Statement by President Barroso on the occasion of Aung San Suu Kyi's delivery of her Nobel Prize lecture in Oslo
"Today, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi will deliver her Nobel Prize lecture in Oslo, 21 years after she was awarded the prize, 22 years after she had first been put into house arrest, and 23 years after she had decided to return to her country to serve the national cause of freedom and democracy.
Her extraordinary achievements over more than two decades will be duly acknowledged in Oslo. And she will share with us her vision of a democratic country and of a society based on human dignity and human rights, and for fighting peacefully for political objectives. Her voice gave hope to millions.
Today, and unthinkable only a few years ago, quite a few of her visions have become reality: a country that is opening up to the world and embarking on a journey towards more democracy and more development. Reforms in Myanmar – courageously led by President U Thein Sein – will need all the support they can get. And we hope that reforms will continue and deepen as the country's challenges in what regards national reconciliation are still important.
This is why Aung San Suu Kyi’s voice is still needed – as a reminder that human values must not be forgotten on the way to overcome poverty and to achieve prosperity.
Today, unlike long periods during the past two decades, Daw Suu speaks in public, as an eminent leader and as elected Member of Parliament. She remains a voice of hope for millions of her compatriots.
I salute Daw Aung San Suu Kyi on this special day and wish her all the success in the pursuit of her noble goals. I salute the fantastic transition her country has embarked upon. The European Union will continue to support her and will assist her country on the journey to its place in the family of nations."