The president of Interpol has reportedly vanished after going to China

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A French judicial official, who spoke on condition of anonymity for an ongoing investigation, said Meng Hongwei's wife reported him missing on Friday.

Meng's wife contacted police in Lyon, the French city where the global police cooperation agency has its headquarters, after not hearing from him since his departure on September 29, police sources said.

Meng was last seen leaving Interpol's headquarters in Lyon in France, late September, the source said, and planned to visit China.

French police said earlier they had launched a search for Meng after being contacted by his wife, news agencies reported.

Meng, who previously served as China's vice minister of public security, was elected to lead the worldwide police organization in 2016.

Interpol President Meng Hongwei has reportedly gone missing.

European officials reported that he left the country on 29 September. His term is expected to run until 2020, according to Interpol's website.

"Interpol is aware of media reports in connection with the alleged disappearance of Interpol President Meng Hongwei".

He is a senior Communist Party official in China and has formerly served as the deputy head of public security. Interpol and Chinese authorities have remained silent so far.

At the time, Amnesty International called Meng's appointment "at odds with Interpol's mandate to work in the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights". Beijing has in the past pressed countries to arrest and deport to China citizens it accuses of crimes, from corruption to terrorism.

By 2004, he was a vice minister of public security and that same year became head of Interpol's China branch.

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