Ahn Cheol-soo Gets Crash Course in State Affairs

      December 29, 2011 12:51

      Ahn Cheol-soo

      Software tycoon Ahn Cheol-soo is getting tutorials in international relations, inter-Korean relations, economics and other fields. He is being helped directly and indirectly by current opposition lawmakers, who have introduced him to experts in various fields.

      Ahn is widely tipped as a promising presidential contender but has not yet announced his candidacy.

      An opposition party official said Ahn "has been having intensive sessions with experts" in a wide range of areas since November.

      Kim Keun-sik, a professor of North Korean studies at Kyungnam University, met with Ahn in early December and they discussed inter-Korean relations for a couple of hours, the official said. "They met again after the death of Kim Jong-il, and discussed the situation in North Korea and policies on North Korea." Kim is a well-known academic who accompanied former President Roh Moo-hyun during his visit to North Korea for inter-Korean summit in 2007 and is a proponent of engagement with the North.

      Another opposition figure said a Democratic United Party lawmaker who is close to Ahn is helping him get a sense of politics along with other lawmakers before the elections next year.

      In a press conference at his IT security firm AhnLab on Dec. 1, Ahn dismissed the possibility of establishing a new political party, but declined to comment whether he will be running for president.

      Ahn plans to set up a charity foundation early next year with half of the 37.1 share he holds in AhnLab.

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