MOFA urges Interpol to allow Taiwan's participation

09/17/2019 05:40 PM
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Taipei, Sept. 17 (CNA) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) urged the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) to allow Taiwan's participation and thanked the United States congressmen who have expressed their support over the issue.

The 88th Interpol General Assembly is scheduled to be held in Chile in October.

A total of 47 U.S. Congressmen, led by Utah representative John Curtis, wrote a joint letter on Sept. 10 to U.S. Attorney General William Barr and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo regarding Taiwan's lack of participation at Interpol, according to a press release posted on Curtis' website Monday.

"This letter will prompt the Administration to engage in a new strategy to combat China's refusal to allow Taiwan to gain observer status in Interpol," Curtis said.

Citing Public Law 114-139, signed by President Donald Trump on March 18, 2016, the letter urged Pompeo to develop a strategy to obtain observer status for Taiwan in Interpol.

The joint letter was also signed by Michael McCaul, Republican leader on the Foreign Affairs Committee; Brad Sherman, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Sub Committee on Asia; and Jim McGovern, chairman of the House Committee on Rules, among others.

"MOFA thanked the U.S. government and U.S. congress for their concrete action in supporting Taiwan's participation in international organizations," MOFA spokeswoman Joanne Ou (歐江安) said on Tuesday, adding that it showed cross-party support in the U.S. for Taiwan on the issue.

Taiwan's lack of Interpol membership prevents it from swiftly sharing information on criminal and suspicious activity with the international community, which leaves a huge gap in global crime fighting efforts and puts the entire world at higher risk, Ou said citing the letter.

She urged Interpol to make appropriate arrangements for Taiwan's participation as soon as possible.

Established in 1923, Interpol is the world's largest international police organization, with 194 member countries. The Republic of China, official name of Taiwan, was accepted as a member in 1961 but replaced by China in 1984.

(By Emerson Lim)


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