Aung San Suu Kyi, Burmese democracy campaigner, has been voted the winner of the Chatham House Prize 2011. The annual award is presented to the statesperson deemed to have made the most significant contribution to the improvement of international relations in the previous year.
Aung San Suu Kyi has become an international icon of democracy and peaceful resistance to oppressive rule, having spent most of the last two decades in some form of detention because of her efforts to bring democracy to Burma. Following her release from house arrest in November 2010, her measured approach has enhanced her international standing and demonstrated that she remains the central figure and overwhelming symbol of opposition in Burma.
"Her consistently measured and non-violent approach towards ending military rule in Burma has served as a powerful example to all those struggling to bring about democratic and accountable systems of governance in their countries," said Chatham House director Robin Niblett.