Interpol Demands China 'Clarification' On Missing Police Chief

08 October, 2018, 13:56 | Author: Donnie King
  • Interpol president Meng Hongwei reported missing after trip to China

Meng, a vice minister of public security in China, was elected president of Interpol in 2016 and is due to serve until 2020, according to the organization's website.

According to a report by the South China Morning Post newspaper, Meng was taken in for questioning by Chinese authorities.

His family have not heard from him since he left Interpol HQ in the French city of Lyon on 25 September. France has launched its own investigation.

It is the latest high-profile disappearance in China, where a number of top government officials, billionaire business magnates and even celebrity Fan Bingbing (范冰冰) have vanished for weeks or months at a time.

Meng has held several senior positions in China including vice minister of public security.

FILE - In this July 4, 2017 file photo, Interpol President, Meng Hongwei, walks toward the stage to deliver his opening address at the Interpol World congress in Singapore.

The International Criminal Political Investigation (Interpol) has officially asked China for information regarding the disappearance of the agency's President Meng Hongwei on a trip to China.

He was "taken away" for questioning by the authorities "as soon as he landed in China" last week, the newspaper said, quoting an unidentified source.

Mr Meng's case is notable for a few reasons.

Interpol links police forces in 192 countries and enables them to work together to fight crime on an global scale.

Interpol has downplayed the concerns, saying the president has little influence over the organisation's day-to-day operations, which are handled by secretary-general Stock, a German.

Meng has nearly 40 years' experience in criminal justice and policing, and has overseen matters related to legal institutions, narcotics control and counter-terrorism, according to Interpol's website.

Meng's appointment as president in 2016 - amid Chinese leader Xi Jinping's sweeping anti-corruption drive - alarmed some human rights organizations, fearful it would embolden China to strike out at dissidents and refugees overseas.

His duties in China would have put him in close proximity to former leaders, some who fell afoul of Xi's campaign. He likely dealt extensively with former security chief Zhou Yongkang, now serving a life sentence for corruption.

Meng, 64, had lived with his wife and two children in France since being elected Interpol president in 2016.

News of the investigation into Mr Meng's disappearance came during a week-long public holiday in China.



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