Police Canadian reported this Thursday that it is investigating reports that claim that China has illegal police stations in its territory. According to local media reports, supported by a report by the Spanish NGO Safeguard Defenders, the Chinese bases are in a house, a commercial building and a warehouse in toronto.
These would be just some of the police stations that the regime of Xi Jinping deployed throughout the world, which is estimated to be close to 54. Its purpose is persecute and put pressure on Chinese citizens that, for his dissent with the only ruling party in the last ten years or after being accused of some crimeThey resorted to exile.
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In that sense, the Canadian police department affirmed that “it is investigating reports of criminal activity in relation to these ‘police stations'” and added that “they take threats to the safety of individuals living in Canada very seriously and are aware of that other states may attempt to intimidate or harm communities or individuals in the country”.
For its part, the Chinese embassy in Ottawa assured that these offices have “local volunteers and not police officers from China“, who assist in the ophthalmological examinations of those who need to renew their driver’s licenses, among other tasks. He also stressed that “they are not involved in any criminal investigation or activity of this type.”
How do these ‘police stations’ operate?
In the last ten years of Xi Jinping in power, the president has made an enormous effort to mute dissenting voices. To do this, he implemented the campaigns known as sky net Y Fox Huntwith which it exerts pressure on citizens who left the country after being accused of white-collar crimes, so that they return -along with the assets- and face the respective charges.
To carry out these operations, the Government promoted the deployment of these offices that operate in a undercover, in places such as premises or homes. According to a spokesman for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, they are stations that provide service to Chinese abroad who need attendanceamong other issues, with the renewal of your driver’s license or any type of procedure. In addition, with the excuse of the impossibility of returning to the country due to flight restrictions due to the pandemic or even due to the high cost of plane tickets, these networks settled in many important cities, without the knowledge of local authorities.
Nevertheless, Laura Hart -director of the NGO that investigated the matter- assured that “the objective is to finish with the dissidents and silence the people”. “People are afraid. Many of those who are being targeted have relatives in China and are afraid to speak out,” she denounced.
With these maneuvers, Safeguard Defenders reported that 230,000 accused of fraud were “persuaded to return” to China between April 2021 and July 2022. Among them, in 2020 a man accused of environmental crimes was forced to travel from Madrid to Qingtian -in Zhejiang province- to surrender to the authorities.
“These operations evade bilateral police work and cooperation, in addition to violating international law and -possibly- the territorial integrity of third countries involved in this establishment of parallel police mechanisms that employ illegal methods,” the report continued.
About, mao night – another spokesman for the Chinese Ministry – responded on Thursday that Beijing did nothing wrong and that “public security authorities carefully follow international law and fully respect the judicial sovereignty of other countries.”
The ‘police stations’ in the world
Along with this investigation initiated in Canada, this Tuesday a group of journalists denounced the presence of these police stations in the Netherlandslocated in the Dutch cities of amsterdam Y Rotterdam. They calculate that they operate in the territory at least from 2018. The local government has not received information about these offices.
It may interest you: China has illegal police stations in the Netherlands to monitor and exert pressure on dissidents
After learning of this, Wang Jingyu – a young Chinese dissident – warned that he has been under pressure three years to return to his country “to solve my problems” after having “insulted war heroes” with criticism of the regime on his social networks. “Think about your parents” was another of the threats she received in a call executed from the office in Rotterdam, added to death threats and street harassment.
The Safeguards Defenders report also warned of the existence of two Chinese police stations in budapestThree in Portugal and one in Dublin -that the local government demanded that it be closed and on which, later, the Chinese Embassy assured that “the activities of the office have ceased”-. As for the bases under the territory of the European Unionthe agency communicated this Thursday that it is up to each country to advance with investigations on the subject since it constitutes a matter of national sovereignty.
Meanwhile, the news network BBC made public the presence of offices in Tanzaniato which the Embassy replied that “they are fabricating stories” in a message on Twitter where they pointed to a disinformation strategy that seeks to break with the China-Africa relations.
For its part, although no police stations have been located in the country, USA last Friday accused seven citizens of intimidating and persecuting an exile in the country, through the Chinese “repatriation squads”.
(With information from AP and AFP)
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