On June 4, 2018, on the 29th anniversary of the Tian’An Men Square protests, ODF was invited to participate in a commemorative event organised by the Wei Jingsheng Foundation and hosted by the Unrepresented Nations and People’s Organization (UNPO).
The debate focused on the current worrying situation of human rights in China and the misuse of INTERPOL arrest warrants. Paola Gaffurini, Advocacy Officer of the ODF was invited to take the floor and introduce the Foundation’s work on this latter issue.
As reported in the summary of the event, “Ms Gaffurini explained that in non-democratic regimes, Article 3 of the Interpol Constitution is not respected. Indeed, the article that enshrines the organisation’s neutrality states that ‘it is strictly forbidden for the Organization to undertake any intervention or activities of a political, military, religious or racial character’.” She underlined that countries violating the Organisation’s rules do not always incur sanctions and recalled that INTERPOL’s processing of requests for an international arrest warrant is the same, whether it is issued by a democratic or non-democratic State. Moreover, she raised the issue of certain member States’ interference in INTERPOL organs, such as the Commission for the Control of INTERPOL’s Files, and particularly the lack of transparency and criteria for candidates.
Further attention was given to the reforms announced by INTERPOL during the General Assembly in 2016 and the urgent need for their implementation, especially those concerning the refugee protection policy and the publicity of the requests. On this account, she called upon different stakeholders to continue raising public awareness of individual cases and finalising the reform path that the Organisation has undertaken.