Sophia University Professor Ishizawa Wins Magsaysay Award (News)


Manila, July 27 (Jiji Press)—Ishizawa Yoshiaki, who worked for decades to save Cambodia's Angkor archaeological site, is among the winners of this year's Ramon Magsaysay Award, known as Asia's version of the Nobel Prize, the award organizer said Thursday.

Born in Obihiro in the northernmost prefecture of Hokkaidō, the 79-year-old professor at Japan's Sophia University has been engaged in research into Angkor, a UNESCO World Heritage site, since his visit to the Angkor Wat temple complex in 1961.

In 1980, Ishizawa entered Cambodia in the midst of a civil war and reached out to the world to warn of the ruinous state the heritage site had fallen into.

He also made efforts to train specialists in preservation of monuments in Cambodia.

The Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation cited Ishizawa's "inspiring leadership in empowering Cambodians to be proud stewards of their heritage" as a reason for choosing him among this year's six winners--five individuals and a group.

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