Michelle Yeoh, who plays Myanmar pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi in an upcoming biopic, has said she was "saddened" by her recent deportation from the country.
The 48-year-old Malaysian actress arrived in the country's main city, Yangon, on June 22 and was deported the same day because she was on a blacklist, a government official said on Tuesday.
In her first comment on the deportation, former Bond girl Michelle said she was "shocked and terribly saddened by the action". She said she harbours no ill will and is still fond of Myanmar and its people.
Michelle said she was treated "cordially" by immigration officials in Yangon but wasn't given a reason for her deportation. Myanmar's repressive government has rejected visa requests from journalists and perceived critics for years.
The star of films such as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Memoirs of a Geisha and the Bond movie Tomorrow Never Dies was making a "private trip as a tourist," assistant Kit Wong said.
"I continue to cherish hopes to see this country continue its progress toward peace and democracy and to be able to return soon," the star said in her statement.
Michelle visited Myanmar in December to meet with Suu Kyi but her portrayal of the democracy icon in the Luc Besson picture The Lady was shot in Thailand. The movie is scheduled to be released later this year.
Suu Kyi, 66, spent most of the last two decades detained by the former military junta. She was released last year - just days after elections that her party boycotted, and in which she was barred from being a candidate.