New Interpol president sued by Britons over allegations of torture and mistreatment

The General Secretary of the United Arab Emirates has been accused by two British nationals of harassing and abusing the incumbent President of Interpol.

Ahmed Naser al Raisi, inspector general of the UAE Ministry of Interior, has spent four years in the International Criminal Police Organization after winning a vote in Turkey.

Mr al Raisi, a member of Interpol’s executive committee, has been charged with felony criminal mischief. Matthew Hedges and Ali Issa Ahmad when he was imprisoned United Arab Emirates.

(LR) Ali Issa Ahmad and Matthew Hedges are both said to have been tortured

Hedges, 34, was a medical student who was detained in the UAE for nearly seven months in 2018 after being accused of being a spy.

Ahmad, 29, of Wolverhampton, was arrested in 2019 wearing a t-shirt with the Qatari flag while two Middle Eastern countries occupied the embassy.

Hedges, a student at the University of Exeter, said he and his family were threatened “by the Emirati security inside the house where Naser al Raisi … is responsible” in 2018.

“The ability of al Raisi to become Interpol president sets an alarming example of the need for counter-terrorism to be tolerated and modified so that other countries can continue to use it around the world.”

Ahmad said he was electrocuted, beaten and robbed of food, water and sleep.

The two have filed lawsuits against al-Raisi in Turkey – with their lawyer Rodney Dixon claiming that their clients “have stepped up their efforts to get justice for their harassment and ousted General al Raisi in national courts wherever they can run for office”.

There are also cases against al-Raisi in four other countries, including France.

A spokesman for the UAE said any complaints lodged against the “President are baseless and will be rejected”.

Human Rights Watch and the Gulf Center for Human Rights said in May that al-Raisi’s election would cast doubt on Interpol’s commitment to human rights.

Mr Al Raisi won after three votes, while Interpol claimed 68.9% of the votes cast in the last round.

He said: “Interpol is a very important organization that was built on the strength of its partnership. It is a cohesive, cohesive workforce, and we continue to promote as we work to achieve a safer world for people and communities.”

On a daily basis, Interpol is run by its secretary general – here with Jurgen Stock of Germany.

The President performs the functions of oversight, presiding over all proceedings as he conducts his general meetings and the general committee meeting.

About 470 police officers, ministers, and other representatives from more than 160 countries were present at the rally to elect a new president, and each state received a single vote.

Al Raisi has taken over from Kim Jong Yan of South Korea, the next Vice President to take over when China’s Meng Hongwei lost half of his term in 2018 in his home country.

Interpol annual conference in Istanbul, Turkey.  Photo: AP
Interpol annual conference in Istanbul, Turkey. Photo: AP

He was after her is accused of bribery and other charges by the state.

China’s state-backed minister Hu Binchen has now been appointed Interpol executive committee as Asia’s ambassador to China.

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