14 Aug 2011

Suu Kyi makes first political trip outside Rangoon

10:21 pm on 14 August 2011

The Myanmar pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi is making her first political trip outside Rangoon since her release from house arrest last November.

She called for national unity as she visited Bago, about 50 kilometres north of Myanmar's main city.

Hundreds of people lined the streets as her convoy made its way to Bago.

Ms Suu Kyi travelled in a three car convoy that was followed by a host of vehicles carrying reporters and supporters.

Hundreds of people lined the roads in towns and villages on the way to Bago, waving banners and shouting slogans reports the BBC.

Security was a major concern for the trip.

On a similar excursion in 2003, her convoy was attacked by a group widely believed to be linked to the old military government.

The incident left several people dead and resulted in a seven-year period of house arrest for Aung San Suu Kyi.

But a BBC correspondent says times have changed somewhat - a new nominally civilian government is now in place and in recent weeks it has shown a willingness to try to reach an accommodation with Ms Suu Kyi.

This visit will be a test of that accommodation, she says.