Seoul Peace Prize

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Mr. Kofi Annan's first assignment with the United Nations was in 1962 when, at the age of 24, he became an Administrative Office and Budget Officer at the World health Organization(WHO). After that, other U.N. positions he has held include Special Representative of the Secretary-General to the former Yugoslavia; Assistant Secretary-General for Peace-keeping Operations' Director of Budget in the Financial Services; Deputy Director of Administration and Head of Personnel at the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees(UNHCR).
  Mr. Annan's remarkably varied United Nations career focused not only on questions of management but also refugee issues and peace-keeping. Based on a wealth of experience and expertise, he helped the U.N. to formulate new approaches to the complex uncertainties of a post-cold-war world.
  Throughout this volatile period, he worked to strengthen the capacity of the Organization to undertake both traditional peace-keeping missions and multi-functional operations, and to shoulder new tasks in the area of international peace and security such as "preventive deployment." To cope with the dramatic growth in the number of operations, Mr. Annan also oversaw the creation of a "situation center" that monitors the peace-keeping operations around the clock.
  Secretary General Annan has also carried out a number of sensitive diplomatic assignments, including negotiating the repatriation of over 900 international staff and the release of Western hostages in Iraq following the outbreak of the Gulf War in 1990. Last February, he made a visit to Iraq and reached an agreement with Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein that ended the standoff over the U.N. arms inspections, averting the threat of another war in the Gulf. In addition, he made great contributions to the peaceful resolution of the conflicts and maintenance of security in locations such as the former Yugoslavia and Africa.
  Most recently, Mr. Annan has been playing a leading role for the conclusion of convention for the International Criminal Court (ICC) which will administer justice on criminal acts against humanity including war crimes and genocide. Thus, his dedicated efforts continue even at this moment for the enhancement of world peace and harmony through the United Nations.