Top Chinese official to head Interpol
A top Chinese security official was on Thursday elected to head the Interpol, in a move that fortifies China’s global influence and could boost its anti-graft campaign in tracking fugitives who have fled the country.
Vice-Minister for Public Security Meng Hongwei was elected President of the International Criminal Police Organisation, making him the first Chinese official to take the prestigious post.
Hongwei took over from his predecessor Mireille Ballestrazzi of France at the closing ceremony of Interpol’s 85th General Assembly in Bali, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
Hailing Hongwei’s election, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said it showed China would like to shoulder more responsibility and contribute to the global law enforcement. Besides boosting China’s global influence, the move is expected to give a fillip to the anti-graft campaign launched by President Xi Jinping after he took over in 2012, helping Beijing in tracking down fugitives or suspects staying abroad.
More than a million officials have been punished under the crackdown. Chinese police have brought over 400 fugitives from at least 61 countries in a campaign called “fox hunt”.
Official estimates say that the officials accused of corruption fled the country with more than USD 126 billion.