Connect to share and comment
All in the family: What many Asian female leaders share (PHOTOS)
Wednesday, December 19th, 2012

SEOUL — As Park Geun-hye becomes South Korea's first female leader, she joins a string of powerful female Asian politicians who have kept it in the family, following their fathers or husbands or preceding their sons into the realm of public service. 

"Park Geun-hye's rise closely follows a pattern in male-dominated Asia of the daughters and husbands of national figureheads becoming powerful through association," GlobalPost's East Asia correspondent Geoffrey Cain points out.

"What's interesting is that all their fathers and brothers were once considered national heroes but later assassinated or exiled somehow."

From Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi, daughter of killed Burmese pro-democracy icon Aung San, to Indonesia's Megawati Sukarnoputri, daughter of the first president of Indonesia, Sukarno, here are six female politicians who have made political office a family affair. 

Female leaders park guy 1

Park Geun-Hye, a popular lawmaker of South Korea's ruling Grand National Party, burns an incense for her father, former president Park Chung-Hee, at a private home in the southern city of Gumi on March 25, 2008.

(Jeon Young-Han - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders park hye 2 1

South Korean President-elect Park Geun-Hye, of the Ruling Saenuri Party, celebrates with her party members during their applause after she is declared the winner of the presidential elections on December 19, 2012 in Seoul, South Korea. Park, daughter of former president Park Chung-Hee, becomes the first female president of South Korea.

(Song Kyung-Seok - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 3 aung san suu kyi

Myanmar democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi — daughter of Aung San, considered to be the Father of modern-day Burma — talks during the 'ASEAN 100 Leadership Forum 2012' at a hotel in Yangon on December 6, 2012. Suu Kyi was speaking on the topic of ' Resilience in Turbulent Times.'

(Soe Than Win - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 4 aung san

An NLD supporter holds up pictures of Myanmar's democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi (L) and her father, the late General Aung San, during celebrations for her 66th birthday at the National League for Democracy (NLD) headquarters in Yangon on June 19, 2011.

(Soe Than Win - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 5 megawati sukarnoputri

Former Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri (R) poses with a wax statue of her father President Soekarno (L) at Madame Tussauds in Bangkok on September 24, 2012. The wax figure was unveiled at the ceremony, attended by Indonesia's fifth President and Soekarno's daughter, Megawati Soekarnoputri.

(Pornchai Kittiwongsakul - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 6 benazir bhutto

A portrait of assassinated Pakistani prime minister Benazir Bhutto sits atop a table during a meeting between U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari in Islamabad on October 21, 2011.

(Kevin Lamarque - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 7 benazhir butto father

This picture taken on September 1, 2008 shows a milk seller passing a billboard featuring slain former Pakistani premier Benazir Bhutto (C), her late father Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (R), and her husband Asif Ali Zardari (L) outside the Bhutto residence in her native town Naudero.

(Rizwan Tabassum - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 8 Yingluck

Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra speaks during a meeting with womens' groups as part of her visit to Pattani, in Thailand's restive south on December 13, 2012. Yingluck also met with teachers' groups amid widespread school closures in the region in response to a number of fatal attacks on educators.

(Tuwaedaniya Meringing - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 9 yinluck brother

Former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra is greeted by well-wishers as he arrives for his birthday party in Hong Kong on July 26, 2012. Thaksin's sister Yingluck Shinawatra is now prime minister following a landslide election win by her brother's party in 2011.

(Philippe Lopez - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 10 aquino son

Philippines President Benigno Aquino (C) attends a mass held to commemorate the first anniversary of the death of his mother, democracy icon and former president Corazon Aquino, at the La Salle Gymnasium in Mandaluyong, in the eastern Manila suburbs on August 1, 2010.

(Rolex Dela Pena - AFP/Getty Images)
Female leaders 11 aquino

New Philippines President Benigno Aquino speaks beside the portrait of his late mother, former president Corazon Aquino, at the presidential palace in Manila on June 30, 2010.

(Rolex Dela Pena - AFP/Getty Images)
Guerrero Mexico disappeared 15
Fed up with authorities who haven't found their missing loved ones, citizens' brigades are defying the law to search themselves.
Gaia 1
Gaia Eco-village is an ecological community in Argentina based on the principles of permaculture.
Ebola survivors 4
Getty photographer John Moore has been capturing some of the most devastating, heart-wrenching, and sometimes hopeful images of the Ebola crisis.