Ahn Eases into Pro-Sunshine Policy Chair

Cho Jong Ik  |  2012-10-18 12:00
Independent presidential candidate Ahn Cheol Soo revealed on the 17th, “I will take on the results of the Sunshine Policy and develop it further.”

Ahn, offering the keynote remarks at an event convened by the Kim Dae-Jung Foundation for discussion of former President Kim’s governing philosophy and South Korea’s future, added, “It is now time for us to bring to fruition the dream left behind by former President Kim Dae Jung. I will lead the way.”

The statement is the most pro-Sunshine Policy of all Ahn's comments to date. Previously at a meeting of unification and national security policy experts on the 28th of last month, Ahn said, “We need to go up one level from the engagement policy pursued by the governments of former presidents Kim Dae Jung and Roh Moo Hyun.”

On October 7th, meanwhile, he said, “We can only ensure the safety of our citizens and their property through tough national security, competent diplomacy and dialogue with North Korea.”

In his book ‘Ahn Cheol Soo’s Thoughts,’ which was released before he declared his candidacy, Ahn assessed the results of the Sunshine Policy and its criticisms, but has since moved toward embracing it more fully and has now revealed his wish to be the successor to it, something that presents a clear challenge to the other progressive presidential challenger, Moon Jae In, a key member of the Roh Moo Hyun government.

For conservatives, however, Ahn’s desire to succeed to and developing the Sunshine Policy points to his lack of experience and the danger that he could be swayed by those around him.

One policy institute researcher told Daily NK, “Ahn is trying to show that his stance is not so different to that of Moon. It is also to win the hearts of the people in the process of integrating with Moon.”
 
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