Software tycoon Ahn Cheol-soo will return to Korea "when he is ready" to continue in politics, his former campaign chief Song Ho-chang said Monday. Song met Ahn in San Francisco last week.
Ahn left for the U.S. after surrendering his promising presidential candidacy at the 11th hour, apparently because he was distressed by politicking in the opposition camp.
He "is spending time resting with his family while contemplating his personal path and political issues," Song added.
He said Ahn "did not talk about" any plans to run in the forthcoming by-elections in April.
A key aide to Ahn said, "The April by-elections are being held only in certain parts of Gyeongsang and Chungcheong provinces, and there's almost no chance that Ahn will run."
Only two to three districts are likely to hold by-elections in April. If Ahn and his political allies return to politics, the by-elections in October are a more promising proposition, since they are held in 10 districts including Seoul, where he enjoys strong support.
Another figure close to Ahn said he is expected to return to Seoul in early March, after president-elect Park Geun-hye is inaugurated.