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Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi addresses UK parliament

Opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi made an historic address in London to a joint session of both Houses of Parliament.

Suu kyi parliament 2012 21 06Enlarge
British Prime Minister David Cameron (L), opposition Labor Party leader Ed Miliband (2L), lawyer and wife of former prime minister Tony Blair, Cherie Blair (3L), and former British prime minister Gordon Brown (2R) meet with Myanmar democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi (C) following her address both houses of parliament in Westminster Hall, central London, on June 21, 2012. (BEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images)

Myanmar's opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, said Thursday that the people of Burma needed the international community to make sure her country's leaders deliver on reform promises, the Associated Press reported.

Suu Kyi is only the second woman, after Queen Elizabeth II, to deliver a speech to a joint session of Parliament in London's Westminster Hall.

"I am here in part to ask for practical help, help as a friend and an equal, in support of the reforms which can bring better lives, greater opportunities, to the people of Burma, who have been for so long deprived of their rights and their place in the world," Suu Kyi said, the AP wrote.

"My country today stands at the start of a journey towards, I hope, a better future. So many hills remain to be climbed, chasms to be bridged, obstacles to be breached," Suu Kyi said. "Our own determination can get us so far. The support of the people of Britain and of peoples around the world can get us so much further."

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The BBC reported she met with Prime Minister David Cameron at Downing Street earlier in the day.

It is Suu Kyi's first overseas trip in 24 years since 1988. She previously spent 15 years under house arrest or imprisoned in Myanmar.

National Public Radio reported Suu Kyi received an honorary degree from her alma mater Oxford on Wednesday, which she was unable to get while under house arrest. She was awarded the law degree in 1993.

She said her days at Oxford helped her survive during the difficult times.

"In terms of a respect for the best in human civilization ... the fact that in Oxford I had learned to respect all that is the best in human civilization helped me to cope with what was not quite the best."

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/united-kingdom/120621/myanmars-aung-san-suu-kyi-addresses-uk-parliament