Published: Sun, October 07, 2018
Worldwide | By Angelina Lucas

Interpol asks China for status of its missing president

Interpol asks China for status of its missing president

But then, nothing. His wife, who put out a call on Friday, said she hasn't heard from her 64-year-old husband since the end of September, the official said.

China has not yet commented and is in the midst of a weeklong holiday. "France is puzzled about the situation of Interpol's president and concerned about the threats made to his wife".

'I completely accept all the penalty decisions made according to law, after the investigation done by tax authorities.

Mr Meng likely dealt extensively with former security chief Zhou Yongkang, who is now serving a life sentence for corruption.

The organisation went out of its way to say that its secretary general, not Meng, was responsible for the day-to-day running of Interpol.

A former vice minister of public security in China, he is the first Chinese national to hold the post. He is due to serve until 2020.

The worldwide Criminal Political Investigation (Interpol) chief Meng Hongwei allegedly went missing on Friday, October 5, after he went to China.

Hong Kong's South China Morning Post said the Interpol chief had been taken away for questioning by Chinese authorities as soon as he landed in the country.

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Vice-Minister at China's Ministry of Public Security, Meng Hongwei is now under investigation in China, amidst the mystery surrounding his disappearance after his wife reported to the French police that he went missing.

Neither China's public security ministry nor its foreign ministry have replied to queries about the president.

He was not on French soil when he was last seen, according a senior French law enforcement official, who declined to say whether he was in China. The official did not specify the reason for why Meng, who was a vice-minister at China's Ministry of Public Security, was detained.

However, his appointment was an alarming sign of China's ability to shape global organisations, including those in which its authoritarian influence was extremely risky, she said.

When Meng was named Interpol's president in November 2016, human rights groups expressed concern that Beijing might try to leverage his position to pursue dissidents overseas.

If he has really gone missing within the Chinese state apparatus, whom did he anger, or what could he have done for Beijing to willingly, and publicly, forfeit the top job at Interpol? However, it does not have the power to send officers into countries to arrest individuals or issue arrest warrants.

"As a matter of fact, Interpol cannot by itself investigate the whereabouts of its missing president, but it can, and in fact should, issue a yellow notice", she said.

Xi has been seeking the return of officials and businesspeople accused of fraud and corruption from overseas, sometimes with the help of Interpol in an arrangement human rights advocates say is prone to abuse.

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