The historic landmark election of a pro-democracy leader in the Asian nation of Myanmar is seen as a giant step toward reform.
Aung San Suu Kyi won a seat in the country's parliament in a landside victory. Suu Kyi's non-violent campaign for democracy made her a global icon and earned her a nobel peace prize.
"It is not so much our triumph as a triumph of the people who have decided that they have to be involved in the political process in this country," she told throngs of supporters chanting her name. "We hope this will be the beginning of a new era."
If confirmed, Suu Kyi will take public office for the first time and lead a small bloc of lawmakers from her opposition National League for Democracy. The country is ruled by a military junta.
Suu Kyi has fought for a free Myanmar for a quarter-century, spending years under house arrest.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton congratulated Myanmar for the vote, during a news conference in Istanbul, Turkey.
"Even the most repressive regimes can reform, and even the most closed societies can open," she said.