Interpol president resigns after being detained in China

Meng under investigation China breaks silence on Interpol director disappearance

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

Making her first public comments on the mystery surrounding Meng's whereabouts, Grace Meng on Sunday told reporters in Lyon, France - where Interpol is based - she thinks the knife was her husband's way of trying to tell her he was in danger.

She said she was taking the unusual step of speaking out because she felt a greater responsibility.

However, it was not clear if the Interpol president, Meng Hongwei, was detained.

Mr Meng, who is also listed as a vice-minister of public security in China, was reported missing after travelling from the city of Lyon in France, where Interpol is based, to China.

The websites of French papers broadcast video clips showing Ms Meng speaking in a trembling voice, with her back to a TV camera in order to hide her appearance. She said he was in China when he sent the image.

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"Interpol's general secretariat looks forward to an official response from China's authorities to address concerns over the president's wellbeing". She told police that she last heard from him 10 days prior and had received threats on social media and by telephone, according to the statement.

It adds that a "suitable police mechanism" was put in place to guarantee Grace Meng's safety, and that the prosecutor's office in Lyon has opened an investigation.

On Saturday, the global police agency urged China to clarify Mr Meng's status, saying it was concerned about the well-being of its president.

Asked if she believed that he has been arrested, she said: 'In China, what happened, I'm not sure'. He had been on a three-country tour, to Norway, Sweden and Serbia, for Interpol before his latest trip back to China, she said.

At a press conference on Sunday, she said that the last text message she had received from him was the image of a knife, which she took as a sign that he was in danger.

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Meng's vanishing act bears hallmarks of what happens to senior officials when they are suspected of violating party rules, usually alleged corruption.

French prosecutors said on Friday they had launched an investigation.

He has also used a popular and wide-ranging anti-corruption campaign to boost supervision of the party and as a powerful weapon with which to purge his political opponents.

Interpol said the senior vice president of its executive committee, Kim Jong Yang of South Korea, would become acting president.

Meng's unexplained disappearance in China, which had prompted the French government and Interpol to make their concerns known publicly, threatened to tarnish Beijing's image as a rising Asian power.

Head of Interpol disappears during visit to China
Kinzelbach also urged Interpol to issue a yellow notice - a global alert used to help locate missing persons - on Meng's behalf. His experience ranges from narcotics control to counter-terrorism, according to Interpol's website .

In a report on Sunday, the Post quoted an analyst as saying that the fact Beijing was willing to jeopardise its diplomatic relations by snatching a high-profile official in such a way suggested the stakes were high.

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