The Fourth Jeju April 3rd Peace Prize Award Ceremony has kicked off on Jeju Island.
This year, the award went to Dan Smith, the Director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute,… or "SIPRI" for short.
"Dan Smith was awarded for his institute's initiatives, which are in line with the values of this Peace Prize Award: reconciliation and co-prosperity."
The ceremony takes place every other year,… in memory of victims of the Jeju April 3rd Incident 73 years ago.
This was a series of incidents in which some 30,000 Jeju residents were killed in a military crackdown,… due to their protest against the division of the Korean Peninsula.
The Peace Prize Award is given to individuals or organizations from across the world,… who have contributed to the resolution of the April 3rd Incident,… or to peace, human rights, or the development of democracy.
In Stockholm in January 2019, SIPRI together with the Swedish government, organized a working-level meeting,… between the two Koreas and the United States.
Under Smith's leadership, SIPRI played the role of the mediator,… to restore dialogue on the issue of denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula and set lasting peace.
"I first became particularly interested in the affairs of the Korean Peninsula almost 30 years ago when I was honored to meet Kim Dae-jung. When I joined SIPRI, this was the first time I was able to make a small contribution to the prospects for peace in this part of the world. It was an immediate priority for me."
Since taking office as the Director of SIPRI in 2015,… Smith has been contributing not only in inter-state conflicts,… but also climate change, gender issues, and food security.
Prior to receiving the award, Smith visited the Jeju April 3rd Peace Park to honor the victims and learn about one of Korea's darkest times.
Meanwhile, a Japanese civic group "Jeju April Third Mount Halla Association" has been awarded the Special Prize for its efforts to globalize awareness of the April 3rd Incident over the last 13 years.
Choi Min-jung, Arirang News, Jeju.