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[[Image:Simitis-papandreou-5.jpg|thumb|300px|left|[[Costas Simitis]] and [[Giorgos Papandreou]] at [[PASOK]]'s 7th Convention that took place from 6 to 8 February, []. The proceedings commenced with the unanimous approval of George Papandreou's candidacy for the Presidency of the party and Kostas Simitis' farewell speech.]]
Papandreou was born in St Paul, Minnesota, in the United States, where his father, [[Andreas Papandreou]], then held a university post. His mother is American-born [[Margaret Papandreou]], nee Chant. He was educated at schools in Toronto Canada, at Amherst College in Massachusetts, Stockholm University, the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and finally at Harvard University. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in
[[Sociology ]] from Amhest College (USA, []-[]) and a Master's degree in Sociology (Sociology of Development) from the LSE (United Kingdom, []-[]). He was a researcher in immigration issues at Stockholm University (Sweden) []-[]). He was also a Fellow (CFIA) of the Foreign Relations Centre of the Harvard University in ([]-[]). Apart from [[Greek language|Greek]] and English he is also fluent in Swedish.
Papandreou's educational career reflected the movements of his father, who had been exiled from Greece for political reasons in [] and did not return until []. His grandfather, the elder [[George Papandreou, senior|George Papandreou]], was twice Prime Minister of Greece. The younger George did not settle in Greece until after the restoration of Greek democracy in []. He then became active in his father's party, the [[PASOK|Panhellenic Socialist Movement]] (PASOK). As the son of the party leader he had a rapid rise, joining the Central Committee of PASOK in [], but no-one disputed his genuine ability.
In the last years of his father's life, Papandreou's loyalty was severely strained when his father divorced his mother to marry [[Dimitra Liani]], an [[Olympic Airways]] hostess. Papandreou was estranged from his father, but their political relationship did not seem to suffer. When Andreas Papandreou died in [], George delivered a generous tribute at his funeral, but ensured that Margaret, not Dimitra, was treated as Andreas's widow.
Papandreou received numerous awards and honorary degrees in recognition of his work for human rights. As Foreign Minister he abandoned the sometimes inflammatory nationalist rhetoric of his father and fostered closer relations with
[[Turkey ]], [[Albania ]] and [[Bulgaria ]], all countries with which Greece has traditionally had hostile relations. He worked without success to solve the dispute over [[Cyprus]], being unwilling to make concessions on Greece's fundamental position that Cyprus must be reunited. He also worked to repair the damage of the [[Macedonia]] crisis of the early 1990s.
On [[December 22]] [], [http://www.european-voice.com/ European Voice] in the publication "The Europeans of the Year" named him as "The Bridge-Builder" and "Diplomat of the Year". [http://www.papandreou.gr/papandreou/content/articlepage.aspx?articleid=1875&language=0].
[[Le Monde ]] has called him the "architect of Greek-Turkish rapprochement". He is a founding member of the Helsinki Citizens Assembly.
Papandreou was elected Vice President of the
[[Socialist International ]] following a proposal by the President, [[Antonio Gutteres ]], at the second day of session of the Council of Socialist International held in [[Ramallah ]] ( [[Palestinian Territories ]]) on [[May 24]], [].