Rock Superstar Bono in Burma This Week

By The Irrawaddy 7 January 2016

The Irish rock superstar Bono paid a holiday visit to Burma this week, including a tour of the ancient city of Bagan in Mandalay Division.

In a post on Tuesday to the Facebook page of U2, the Dublin-based band of which Bono is the front man, a photograph of the Bagan skyline dotted with hot air balloons, a popular means of taking in the sacred Buddhist site, was accompanied by the caption “Hot & cold air – Bono.”

Fans were quick to show their support, thanking Bono for visiting the former hermit state and doling out thousands of “likes” to the post. One user shared a picture of Bono with well-known Burmese comedian Zarganar, also known as Maung Thura.

Eleven Media reported on Thursday that the singer-songwriter flew Wednesday to Shan State’s Heho, where the airport is commonly used as the fly-in point for Inle Lake, another popular tourist attraction.

When National League for Democracy (NLD) chairwoman Aung San Suu Kyi was under house arrest for nearly two decades under Burma’s former military junta, Bono dedicated the band’s 2002 Grammy Award-winning song “Walk On” to the pro-democracy leader.

In an interview with ITV News in 2012, Bono said he was “very, very moved” to meet Suu Kyi, referring to when he met the face of Burma’s pro-democracy movement in Dublin to award her Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award, also in 2012.

“Ms. Suu Kyi is enormously admired in this country, and her visit here is something which we have long hoped to see,” Bono said in the interview.

“I expressed the warm welcome and admiration which is felt for her in this country. I wished Daw Suu Kyi every success with her Irish visit and her ongoing important work on behalf of the Burmese people, which enjoys the full support of the Irish people.”