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Aung San Suu Kyi receives KU honorary doctorate, engages in dialogue with students (3 November 2016)


16 Nov 2016



      On 3 November, Kyoto University presented an Honorary Degree of Doctor to Her Excellency Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar's state counsellor and foreign minister. The ceremony took place at the KU Inamori Center with the attendance of President Juichi Yamagiwa and other University officials, including executive vice-presidents and deans, as well as representatives of Japan's foreign and education ministries and the Myanmarese government.

      The doctorate was awarded in recognition of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi's outstanding contributions to the advancement of freedom and democracy, which constitute the foundation of academia, in Myanmar as well as across the globe. She is the 14th KU honorary doctor, and the first to have received the degree for her dedication to these widely shared values.

      After receiving her doctoral certificate and academic stole from President Yamagiwa, Ms Suu Kyi delivered a speech, in part of in Japanese, expressing her gratitude for the honor conferred and sharing her recollections of the days she spent in Kyoto as a visiting scholar.

      The ceremony was followed by an open discussion, in which eight KU students took part from faculties and graduate schools related to international politics and other fields of relevance to Myanmar. The students were deeply impressed with the way Daw Aung San Suu Kyi responded to each question, and a relaxed atmosphere pervaded as the 150-member audience intently followed the exchanges and occasionally erupted in laughter.

      After the event, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi was guided by Professor Yasuyuki Kono, director of the Center for Southeast Asian Studies (CSEAS), to visit the "Aung San Suu Kyi Room" in CSEAS' east building, doing so for the first time in three and a half years. The room is a former laboratory where Daw Aung San Suu Kyi worked as a visiting researcher from October 1985 to June 1986, and which currently serves as a space for displaying materials related to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

      Daw Aung San Suu Kyi (left) and President Yamagiwa after the ceremony

      Daw Aung San Suu Kyi speaking

      President Yamagiwa delivering  congratulatory remarks

      Daw Aung San Suu Kyi responding to a student question

      A KU student asking a question

      Ceremony attendees

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      Aung San Suu Kyi receives KU honorary doctorate, engages in dialogue with students (3 November 2016)
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