China probes Interpol chief Meng Hongwei

Wife of missing Interpol president says he sent her a photo of a knife

Meng under investigation: China breaks silence on Interpol director disappearance

The wife of the missing Interpol president said Sunday the last contact with her husband came via a WhatsApp text message with a knife emoji and the instructions, "Wait for my call". It did not say why.

China's antigraft watchdog said on Sunday Interpol President Meng Hongwei, who had gone missing, is under investigation on suspicion of unspecified violations of the law. The disciplinary arm of China's Communist Party released a statement saying Hongwei "is under investigation by the National Supervision Commission for alleged violations of laws".

Meng's wife said on Sunday that she hadn't heard from him since he left the French city of Lyon at the end of September.

She said he had sent her a message with a knife emoticon on her mobile phone signifying he was in danger.

She's received no news from her husband since, and doesn't know what has happened to him, AP said. His wife first learned about the party statement from The Associated Press; she said she was struggling to believe what it said.

Critics of Meng's 2016 election to Interpol's presidency said he would use the position to help China target dissidents overseas under the guise of pursuing corrupt officials.

Grace Meng said he travelled to the country in September for work.

According to a report by the South China Morning Post newspaper, Meng was taken in for questioning by Chinese authorities.

"His job is very busy", she said.

Before he shared the knife image, she said she had sent him a photo of two animal figurines, one of a bear and another of a horse, meant to represent their two children; one of them loves horses, she said, and the other "looks like the bear". He is a senior member of the Communist Party.

Beijing had remained tight-lipped about the fate of Meng, who is also China's vice minister for public security, since his disappearance was disclosed by French officials on Friday.

Rights groups voiced concerns around the time of Mr Meng's election as Interpol president in 2016 that the chief would pursue a politicised agenda that might target Xi's opponents.

She wouldn't speculate on her husband's current whereabouts.

She read a statement in Chinese and English during the press conference, but kept her back to reporters not allowing them to see her face and refused to be photographed, saying she did not want to be identified as she feared for her safety and that of her two children. "This matter belongs to my motherland", she added in the video clips. Only at the behest of a country does the information go public via a "red notice, the closest thing to an global arrest warrant".

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