Aung San Suu Kyi over the years

Associated Press SHARE

By The Associated Press, Associated Press

Myanmar democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi is returning to Europe this week after more than two decades, a span that saw her win a Nobel Peace Prize but also spend 15 years under house arrest for standing up to the military junta in her native country.

Suu Kyi's stops will include Norway, where she is to make a belated acceptance speech for the Nobel awarded to her 21 years earlier. She also will visit Switzerland, France and Ireland — as well as Britain, where Suu Kyi studied and lived for years, and where she left behind her late husband Michael Aris and their two sons, Alexander and Kim, to return to her homeland in 1988 to nurse her ailing mother.

The European tour, expected to last about two weeks, is seen as a sign of gratitude to the governments and organizations that supported Suu Kyi's peaceful struggle against Myanmar's generals. It also will be a chance for Europe to get a sense of whether recent political reforms in Myanmar, where Suu Kyi won a seat in Parliament in April, truly spell the end of its dictatorship.

Here are photos of Suu Kyi over the years:

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.