Seoul Peace Prize

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Mrs. Sadako Ogata was born in Tokyo, Japan on September 16, 1927. She received a Ph. D in Political Science from the University of California at Berkeley in 1963, an M.A. in International Relations from Georgetown University in Washington D.C. in 1953 and a B.A. from the University of the Sacred Heart in Tokyo in 1951.
  Mrs. Ogata assumed office as the UNHCR on February 18, 1991. Prior to this, she was Dean of the Faculty of Foreign Studies at the Sophia University in Tokyo from 1989. From 1976 to 1979, she was Chairman of the Executive Board of UNICEF. Also during 1978 and 1979, Mrs. Ogata was Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary at the Permanent Mission of Japan to the United Nations, having served as Minister there from 1976 to 1978. She also served as UN Special Emissary investigating problems of Cambodian refugees on Thai-Cambodian border.
  On the basis of her belief that "No one becomes a refugee at his or her own will", High Commissioner Ogata has visited scores of locations torn by armed conflict over the past 10 years. To help alleviate the plight of refugees, she has urged governments to sign conventions on refugee protection and make donations for the creation of relief funds, in addition to the establishment of camps for refugees. She has helped make the UNHCR one of the world's principal humanitarian agencies. Mrs. Ogata is widely considered a "godmother" by tens of millions of refugees across the world.