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Aung San Suu Kyi begins U.S. tour

By Ashley Fantz, CNN
updated 9:36 PM EDT, Tue September 18, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Aung San Suu Kyi began her tour of the U.S. Tuesday
  • She met with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
  • She will meet with Burmese now living in Fort Wayne, Indiana

(CNN) -- Myanmar democracy activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi kicked off her 17-day tour of the United States on Tuesday by meeting with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

The two were photographed laughing and chatting at the State Department, where they met in Clinton's private office.

Over the next two weeks, Suu Kyi is slated meet with high-level Washington officials and democratic activists in Washington.

She'll be honored at ceremonies across Washington and on Wednesday receive the Congressional Gold Medal. Then it's on to New York to speak at a university and at a museum.

Next week, she'll be a guest of the Sen. Mitch McConnell in Kentucky. Her trip ends in California.

It is a lot of travel for a person who spent most of the past 20 years under house arrest imposed by her country's ruling military junta.

She was released from detention in November 2010 and this year was finally able to pick up the Nobel Peace Prize she won in 1991.

"We have this plan throughout the country that when refugees come, we try and find sponsors, and I don't know yet about Fort Wayne," Clinton told Suu Kyi on Tuesday.

"I'm looking forward to visiting Fort Wayne," Suu Kyi replied. "There's all sorts of interesting things happening in Fort Wayne."

As part of Suu Kyi's U.S. tour, she will visit the Indiana city, home to one the United States' largest populations of Burmese expatriates. Since the early 1990s, about 5,000 Burmese have carved out a life there.

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