Chinese official wins key Interpol post despite backlash from MPs across the globe

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London: China has prevailed in its bid to have a senior PRC government official elected to Interpol’s governing committee.
Interpol announced Hu Binchen’s victory, securing a three-year term on Interpol’s executive committee following a secret vote of members at its general assembly in Istanbul.
Hu Binchen was elected to Interpol’s executive committee on Thursday.Credit:Twitter/Interpol_HQ
“Mr Binchen HU of China and Mr Praveen SINHA of India have been elected to the posts of Delegate for Asia (three-year term),” Interpol said in a tweet.
Hu Binchen is a deputy general in China’s Ministry of Public Security which oversees policing.
His candidacy was opposed by MPs who are part of global alliance representing democratic countries who say his election would give Beijing the green light to misuse the agency and in particular the Red Notices it issues for arrests of wanted fugitives who have fled abroad to evade justice.
The Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC) said it was “deeply concerned” by the result.
“The government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) has repeatedly abused the Interpol Red Notice to persecute dissidents in exile,” IPAC said in a statement.
“Hu’s election gives the PRC government a green light to continue using Interpol as a vehicle for its repressive policies globally and places thousands of Hong Konger, Uyghur, Tibetan, Taiwanese and Chinese dissidents living abroad at even graver risk.
“The PRC cannot be allowed to continue its long-arm policing abroad. Activists, dissidents and exiles living abroad must be protected from harassment and intimidation from the PRC authorities,” the alliance said.
It called on countries with extradition treaties with China and Hong Kong to immediately revoke them. Australia does not have an extradition treaty with Beijing after the Liberal Party blocked an attempt to establish one when Malcolm Turnbull was prime minister.
The Australian Federal Police, which represents Australia at Interpol, has been contacted for comment.
Britain also won a seat on the executive committee, which is an internal governance body rather than an operational organ of the international crime-fighting organisation.
Earlier, Interpol’s general assembly elected Ahmed Nasser Al Raisi, from the United Arab Emirates, as the organisation’s new president.
Ahead of the closely watched votes on Thursday, Interpol’s Secretary-General sought to assuage concerns about Red Notices being misused, saying repeated attempts to arrest political opponents of regimes would not be accepted.
“The power of any Red Notice is in the trust of our membership and of decision-makers in it,” he said.
“Undermining that trust is undermining Interpol as a whole. Our Constitution is clear -no trade-off exists between “the widest possible mutual assistance” by criminal police and “the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights”, or our neutrality
“The General Secretariat will enforce the rules, as defined by the General Assembly. Requests that do not fall within those boundaries do not belong at Interpol – they will be declined,” he said.
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