Kim Dae-jung (1925-2009), a former South Korean president, was awarded the 2000 Rafto Prize for his tireless work for democracy and human rights in Korea. He also received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2000.
After a turbulent rise to power, two imprisonments and numerous attempts on his life for his long-standing opposition to authoritarian rule, Kim Dae-jung was elected in 1998 as President of South Korea. He completed his five year term in 2003. The reforms and restructuring that he began early in his presidency still continue.
Kim Dae-jung’s policies of economic reform and restructuring in South Korea, together with his policy of engagement and re-conciliation towards North Korea, better known as the “Sunshine Policy”, rendered hope for peaceful and democratic development, with respect for fundamental human rights.