Interpol Urges China To Clarify Status On Missing Police Chief

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China remained silent Saturday over the disappearance of the head of Interpol, deepening the mystery over the global police chief's fate after reports said he was detained for questioning on arrival in his homeland.

Meng's wife says she hasn't heard from him since he left the French city of Lyon at the end of September to go to China.

The 64-year-old, who is also a vice-minister at China's Ministry of Public Security, was "taken away" for questioning by discipline authorities "as soon as he landed in China" last week, a source said.

Before taking over at Interpol, Meng Hongwei was deputy minister in charge of public security in China.

Meng Hongwei's disappearance seems to fit in with a now familiar pattern among China's senior Communist Party officials. The president at Interpol is an elected person for a term of four years who heads the executive committee and is responsible for the supervision of the execution of decisions made by general assembly of Interpol.

He is still listed as a vice-minister for the Chinese government according to the South China Morning Post.

Interpol, which groups 192 countries and which is usually focused on finding people who are missing or wanted, said in a statement from its secretary general, Juergen Stock, that it had asked China for clarification.

The French interior ministry, meanwhile, said it was concerned about unspecified "threats" received by Meng's wife.

Sources told the newspaper he was being questioned.

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The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the party's secretive internal investigation agency, had no announcements about Meng and couldn't be reached for comment, according to the Associated Press and Reuters.

Here are some facts about Meng that might have a bearing on his disappearance during a trip to China.

The Interpol chief's wife, who is living in France, where the worldwide law enforcement organization is based, reported him missing on Friday, according to multiple media reports.

In 2014, China worked through Interpol to issue notices for 100 Chinese corruption suspects who fled overseas.

Meng is the first from his country to serve as Interpol's president, a post that is largely symbolic but powerful in status and not without political weight.

China now has 44 outstanding red notices, mostly related to murder, intentional injury and drug smuggling, according to Interpol's web site. His term as Interpol president runs until 2020.

China has not commented officially on Meng's disappearance and there was no mention of him in official media on Saturday.

"This is a matter for the relevant authorities in both France and China". Only at the behest of a country does the information go public via a "red notice", the closest thing to an worldwide arrest warrant.

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