Interpol picks South Korea's Kim Jong-yang as president over Russian rival

Interpol picks South Korea's Kim Jong-yang as president over Russian rival

The US-backed Kim, acting president of the global police body, was picked at a meeting of delegates from member nations in Dubai to replace Meng Hongwei, who went missing in his native China in September.

The South Korean's election is a blow to Moscow's efforts to reserve the position for a Russian candidate, who was strongly opposed by the US, Britain and other European nations.

Tom Tugendhat and Yvette Cooper, chairs of the influential Commons foreign and home affairs select committees, had said that having Mr Prokopchuk being elected would be "the latest nail in Interpol's coffin".

A stream of worldwide critics has called upon Interpol not to proceed with plans to install a Russian candidate as its new president.

The pair are holding the event in order to speak out against Alexander Prokopchuk, a Russian law enforcement official who is a candidate in Wednesday's election to decide the next head of Interpol. Whoever is elected will serve out Meng's term until 2020.

Anti-Kremlin figures raised concerns, including Alexei Navalny, the Russian opposition leader who has been repeatedly jailed by authorities.

US National Security Council spokesman Garrett Marquis echoed Kim's endorsement.

Yesterday senior United Kingdom politicians and human rights groups decried his candidacy and called for him to be stopped from getting the top job.

'I don't think that a president from Russian Federation will help to reduce such violations'.

"Interpol electing Major General Alexander Prokopchuk as its new president is akin to putting a fox in charge of a henhouse", they said.

Among those targeted have been Mikhail Khodorkovsky, an exiled Russian businessman, and financier Bill Browder, the subject of six red notice requests by Russia, all of them thrown out by Interpol.

"We really hope that the new leadership of the U.S. Justice Department will adopt an impartial and legal approach to the activities of William Browder", Alexander Kurennoi, a spokesman for the Prosecutor General's Office, told reporters at a press conference.

To Moscow, the complaints are all part of a Western-led campaign to weaken a resurgent Russian Federation.

"Russia has consistently misused Interpol to pursue its political opponents", he wrote on Twitter on Tuesday. "The Interpol constitution has very specific rules, which forbid countries who are serial abusers from using the system".

Bill Browder, who runs an investment fund that had once operated in Moscow, says Russian Federation used the diffusion system against him, which led to his brief arrest in Spain earlier this year.

As chief executive of Hermitage Capital Management in Russia, Browder uncovered $230 million in tax fraud allegedly carried out by senior Russian officials.

Russian Federation denies accusations of foreign interference and announced new charges against Browder this week in a long-running legal battle against him.

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