Missing Interpol Chief ‘under investigation’ in China
DHARAMSALA, Oct 6: Amidst the mystery surrounding the disappearance of the Interpol chief, Meng Hongwei, after travelling to China, it is being reported that he has been detained in his native China for questioning as part of an investigation against him.
“Meng Hongwei, was “taken away” for questioning by discipline authorities “as soon as he landed in China” last week,” the South China Morning Post reported citing a source as saying.
Meng, 64 who is also a senior member of the Chinese Communist Party and China’s Vice Minister for public security reportedly left for China from Interpol’s headquarters in Lyon, southeast France, in late September.
The French police are apparently investigating the disappearance of Interpol chief after his wife contacted the police in Lyon after not hearing from him since Sept. 25, and after receiving threats by phone and on social media, the Reuters reported citing a source from the French ministry.
Meanwhile, the French police have placed his wife under protection after threats while further investigations are on.
Though it is not clear why and where Meng is being investigated by the Chinese authorities, it is being speculated that he had antagonized Chinese authorities in some way or other.
Meng was appointed the head of Interpol in 2016. His appointment at the helm of the leading international crime fighting and police cooperation organization INTERPOL aroused concern from rights groups as they feared it will aid China’s crackdown on dissidents abroad.
Interpol is the world’s largest agency facilitating police cooperation, with 192 member countries. While it can issue international alerts for wanted persons, it does not have direct power to issue arrest warrants. He is due to serve until 2020.