Voting for Interpol’s next president is expected to take place later in the week, and it seems that Alexander Prokopchuk will likely be voted to lead the international law enforcement agency. In response, Senator Marco Rubio has teamed up with other Senators to voice their disapproval of the possible move.
Rubio’s office slammed Prokopchuk, saying that “The Russian Federation is one of the main countries to exploit Interpol’s red notice system, whereby notices of arrest are sent to all member countries. Russia has used the red notice system to harass Russian dissidents, critical Americans and other individuals opposed to the Kremlin’s aggression around the globe. Russia’s candidate for the President of Interpol, Major General Alexander Prokopchuk, has been particularly involved in the Kremlin’s continued harassment campaign since he served as the head of Russia’s National Central Bureau since 2011.”
In a joint statement, the Senators commented that “Interpol electing Major General Alexander Prokopchuk as its new president is akin to putting a fox in charge of a henhouse. Russia routinely abuses Interpol for the purpose of settling scores and harassing political opponents, dissidents and journalists. Alexander Prokopchuk has been personally involved in this intimidation strategy which ultimately seeks to weaken democratic institutions and embolden Putin’s authoritarian regime.”
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They also added that “If elected as president by the members of Interpol’s General Assembly on Wednesday, we have no doubt that Mr. Prokopchuk will further institutionalize the abuse of Interpol red notices and block ongoing efforts at meaningful reform. Further, the potential access he would gain to sensitive law enforcement data will bolster the Kremlin’s ability to harass critics living outside of Russia and aid other authoritarian regimes seeking to do the same. For these reasons, we urge all 192 members to stand for the integrity of Interpol as a legitimate international law enforcement mechanism and vote against Mr. Prokopchuk. We continue to call on our administration to use its voice, vote and influence to ensure that Interpol can no longer be co-opted by Putin and other dictators for their own nefarious purposes.”