As the media focus on Jamal Khashoggi, Osama bin Laden’s old friend who writes for The Washington Post so that makes him a hero, another international figure has gone missing and may now be dead, according to his own wife.
Earlier this month The Daily Wire reported on the disappearance of then-Interpol President Meng Hongwei. He reportedly went to China to visit family, sent his wife a text with the “knife emoji” and a message saying “Wait for my call,” and then went silent. French police opened an investigation (Interpol headquarters is located in France) and asked the Chinese government for information. A day later, Interpol received a resignation letter from Meng, and China claimed he was being investigated for bribery.
Meng was living with his family in France after he became the first Chinese national to lead Interpol, an international police organization. He was also China’s vice minister of public security.
Meng’s wife, Grace, who first appealed to international media when she believed her husband was missing, now tells the BBC she doesn’t know if he’s still even alive.
“I think it is political persecution. I’m not sure he is alive,” Grace said. “[The Chinese Communist party] are cruel. They are dirty.”
The Guardian reports that Meng may be held under the new Chinese form of custody, “liuzhi,” which means “retention in custody.” The former custody system, “shuanggui,” used torture. The custody is overseen by the National Supervisory Commission, an agency created this year and charged with investigating government corruption.
“Under liuzhi detainees can still be denied access to legal counsel or families for as long as six months, and human rights advocates do not believe it will be much better,” the Guardian wrote. “In May the driver of a low-ranking official in Fujian province died after almost a month under liuzhi. When relatives saw his body it was covered in bruises and his face was disfigured.”
Grace is taking a big risk speaking out about a Chinese official in this way, but she said she feels she must stand up.
“This thing shows … it means they can do anything. I can’t imagine. [There is] no limit. That is also for all of China now,” she said. “That’s why I must stand up and I don’t want any other wives and children like me.”
Grace said she hasn’t heard from her husband in weeks.