China Confirms It Is Holding ‘Missing’ Interpol President
China’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection confirmed the status of missing Interpol President Meng Hongwei in a short statement Sunday, saying he is under the supervision of the state for suspected violation of the law.
Meng, who is also the vice minister of public security in China, “is suspected of violating the law and is currently under the supervision of the State Supervision Commission,” the official announcement reads.
The Vice Minister of Public Security of China is under investigation https://t.co/YsDXPhr91p
— CGTN (@CGTNOfficial) October 7, 2018
Chinese authorities have been largely quiet on the whereabouts of Meng since his mysterious “disappearance” in September after returning to China from France.
His wife, Grace Meng, told reporters Sunday that she hadn’t heard from her husband since Sept. 25, and claims she was sent a picture of a knife emoji from his number. (RELATED: ‘Missing’ Interpol CEO Reportedly And Now Under Investigation)
She also reportedly went to the French authorities 10 days after she had last heard from her husband, and said in statement that she’d been receiving threats on social media and over the phone.
China’s announcement does not say exactly where Meng is or if he was officially arrested, but reports have been circling that he is being investigated for corruption, including taking bribes and other unspecified crimes, CNN reports.
Interpol, which is based in France and otherwise known as The International Criminal Police Organization, issued a statement Sunday saying Meng had resigned from his position as president.
Statement by the INTERPOL General Secretariat on the resignation of
Meng Hongwei. pic.twitter.com/c2daKd9N39
— INTERPOL (@INTERPOL_HQ) October 7, 2018
“(Meng) insisted on taking the wrong path and had only himself to blame (for his downfall),” China’s top law enforcement official, Zhao Kezhi, was quoted as saying, according to a CNN report.
In a somewhat similar fashion, prominent Chinese actress Fan Bingbing went missing from the public in September and reappeared last week amid reports that China’s tax authorities ordered her to pay 884 million yuan ($128 million) in overdue taxes and fines, South China Morning Post reported.
“Her disappearance, should be seen within the broader context of the ever-expanding use of enforced disappearances under Xi Jinping, and the newly-formed National Supervision Commission,” human rights advocate Michael Caster wrote after her disappearance.
Deng Yuwen, a former editor of a Communist Party journal, also suggested in a New York Times report on Meng that such disappearances amid criminal investigations are not uncommon in China.
“If Meng Hongwei has disappeared in China, then of course the most likely reason is an anticorruption investigation,” he said.
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