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Former U.N. chief Ban renounces presidential ambitions

All Headlines 15:52 February 01, 2017

SEOUL, Feb. 1 (Yonhap) -- Former U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday renounced his presidential ambitions in a surprise decision likely to strengthen the frontrunner position of the current opposition presidential hopeful and frustrate those yearning for change in feud-laden politics.

"I will give up my pure aspiration to achieve a change in politics under my leadership and unify the country," Ban said during an impromptu press conference at the National Assembly.

"I was very frustrated by (some of the political circles') parochial, selfish attitudes, and reached a conclusion that it is meaningless to move forward with them," he added

Since his return to Korea on Jan. 12 after 10 years of service at the world body, he had been exploring whether to officially begin a full-fledged presidential campaign. But his efforts have faltered due to continued political attacks and corruption allegations involving himself and his relatives.

sshluck@yna.co.kr
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