Amnesty International has announced that Burmese (Myanmar) pro-democracy leader and Nobel laureate, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, is being bestowed its most prestigious honour "" the "Ambassador of Conscience" Award for 2009.
The announcement of the accolade to in absentia Aung San Suu Kyi was made by Bono during U2's third Croke Park concert last night. The U2 front-man re-iterated the human rights watchdog optimism that receiving the award in itself "will help keep her safe." Bono continued;
"Her crime is that, if she was free to participate in elections, she would win. This week the brutal force that has her incarcerated will decide if she spends the next five years in prison,"
Now in its 6th year of existence Amnesty's "Ambassador of Conscience Award", is awarded in recognition of individuals who possess exceptional leadership qualities in their battle to protect and promote human rights. Past recipients of this prestigious Amnesty award include Nelson Mandela and Mary Robinson. Nobel Laureate Seamus Heaney's poem specially penned for Amnesty International became the inspiration for the award's inception and is designed to highlight the courageous work undertaken by true advocates of human rights issues around the globe.
Amnesty International's Secretary General, Irene Khan said;
"This month marks the twentieth anniversary of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi's arrest and twenty years since Amnesty International declared her a prisoner of conscience. In those long and often dark years Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has remained a symbol of hope, courage and the undying defence of human rights, not only to the people of Myanmar but to people around the world,"
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