The Nobel peace laureate was initially sentenced to three years in prison with hard labour.

But the sentence was later reduced to 18 months house arrest on the orders of Senior General Than Shwe, the head of the country's military government.

The American, John Yettaw, who was sentenced to seven years in prison, was released on humanitarian grounds and deported on August 16.

Aung San Suu Kyi has been detained for about 14 of the past 20 years for her political activities but this year was the first time she faced criminal charges.

Her party, the National League for Democracy, swept elections in 1990 but the results were rejected by the military, which has ruled Myanmar since 1962.