N.Korean Press Notes Ahn Cheol-soo's Political Clout

      September 22, 2011 09:05

      Park Geun-hye (left) and Ahn Cheol-soo

      North Korea's official Rodong Sinmun daily on Wednesday reported on the rising popularity of software tycoon Ahn Cheol-soo, saying that South Korean politics is being shaken up by his sudden rise.

      Under the headline "Fierce Election for Seoul Mayor," the daily wrote, "The Oct. 26 Seoul mayoral by-election has become a crucial vote that will determine the results of next year's general and presidential elections. A fierce battle has begun between political forces in the South ahead of the elections."

      The paper described Ahn as an "independent candidate with anti-government tendencies" and went on to say that he is a strong candidate for president. It reported that polls show Ahn ahead of former ruling Grand National Party leader Park Geun-hye, another presidential contender.

      "The GNP has been hit hardest by the emergence of Ahn Cheol-soo," it reported. "Seeking to stay in power by leaning on the popularity of Park Geun-hye, the party is already gripped with fear over the prospect of losing to Ahn."

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