Recently, a Chinese man named Wang Jing Yu and his fiance has been hunted internationally. Chinese police hunted him down in 2021 after he commented online about the deadly border clash between Chinese and Indian troops.
Wang Jing Yu also knows about the presence of Chinese police stations in Rotterdam, Netherlands. We will later explain this.
According to the Chinese language media outlet Xin Tang Ren, Wang Jing Yu questioned the falsification of military casualties. In addition, they criticized why the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) authorities took so long to release this news.
However, his post was later removed. The Chongqing police announced that Wang Jing Yu insulted Chinese soldiers. Therefore, according to the Chinese language media outlet Da Ji Yuan, he was suspected of “picking quarrels and provoking trouble,” and would be put into criminal detention once arrested.
VOA Chinese posted a video of Wang Jing Yu sharing his story on Youtube. He said, “One of the so-called case officers sent me text messages. He said I must return to China within three days. No matter where I am, he said you have such a big influence on this matter. Now, people know that you defamed the PLA.
The Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, that is the central department, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and many departments know about this matter. He also threatened me on the phone, saying do you think you are more capable as an individual or as a nation? He told me to not think other countries can protect you, he said this is delusional!”
Wang gave interviews with VOA Chinese, Radio Free Asia, and Deutsche Welle to reveal what was happening to them.
Wang said he was arrested by plainclothes police in Dubai while being transferred to a flight to the United States in early April. He was detained for weeks. He said Chinese authorities in Dubai took away his green card. The U.S. State Department called this a human rights violation.
Later, he was freed on May 27. The first thing Wang did was flee to Turkey and then to Ukraine. These two countries are open to Chinese citizens and serve as a temporary haven. However, he received a warning email saying that Chinese officials knew he was hiding in Ukraine. They escalated the charges against him to the subversion of state power.
He has fled from Chinese police since July 2019 and traveled abroad with Wu after posting comments on Chinese social media sites supporting mass demonstrations in Hong Kong. Wang said he had been receiving threatening phone calls. His parents sent him abroad to avoid possible trouble.
Teng Biao, a former Chinese human rights lawyer living in the United States, said, “It’s unprecedented to pursue a fugitive overseas because of online speech. The system in China, the relationship between public power and the people, is black and white, a perverted system. The government’s invasion of citizens’ privacy is very common, and things like tracing humans are also backed by the government’s tacit approval and encouragement.”
Chinese citizens have commented on the video. One person said that seeking and speaking truths may be a noble attribution, but first, people must learn to protect themselves. Meanwhile, another referred to family kidnapping in a big country like China.
According to Chinese media outlet Da Ji Yuan, Wang was born in mainland China. When Wang was in middle school, he learned how to circumvent the CCP’s censorship and surf the free internet.
His mother used to be a director of the disciplinary inspection department of PetroChina’s Chongqing Branch. Meanwhile, his father once worked at the Shapingba Police Branch Bureau as a police officer in Chongqing.
Wang said that he was reading a book entitled “Nine Commentaries,” a series about the Communist Party, and thought about what he could do after knowing the origin of the CCP. He also learned from his father’s experience.
China is expanding its police force overseas
According to VOA Chinese, Wang Jingyu and Wu Huan, his fiance, fled from Ukraine to Amsterdam, the capital of the Netherlands, on July 22. In the Financial Times, Wang claims to have received hundreds of calls from a number listed in Chinese media as a police station set up by the Fuzhou police since February 2022.
He was told to hand himself in at the overseas police station in Rotterdam and to think of his parents back in China. Wang didn’t believe it was real. He wondered how there could be a Chinese police station in Rotterdam.
Let’s gather some information to see whether China is really expanding its police force overseas.
According to Safeguard Defenders, a human rights non-government organization, fourteen governments have launched investigations into China’s 110 overseas police stations. This organization released a report entitled “110 Overseas—China’s Transnational Policing Gone Wild”.
China has set up at least 54 police-run “overseas police service centers” across five continents, according to the report. Some cooperate with the Chinese police to conduct policing operations on foreign soil (including in Spain).
The countries investigating China’s police force expansion are Australia, Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Nigeria, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, the UK, and the U.S.
According to the report, the Fuzhou Public Security Bureau opened its “first batch” of 30 overseas police service stations in 25 cities in 21 countries. Liu Rongyan, Director of the Overseas Chinese Police Office of the Public Security Bureau in Fuzhou City, Fujian Province, announced on November 22 this year.
In addition, People’s Public Security News published an article on the Qingtian County Public Security Bureau’s “innovative set up of Overseas Police Service Centers” to provide “convenient services for the vast number of overseas Chinese.”
These stations are in 21 cities in 15 countries, including Rome, Milan, Paris, Vienna, and Austria.
Illegal establishment of Chinese overseas police stations
Safeguard Defenders cites government documents. The 54 discovered “service stations” constitute illegal policing operations on foreign soil. They are called the “overseas 110” and are under the control of two Chinese police jurisdictions, Fuzhou and Qingtian police. 110 is the emergency number in China
Deutsche Welle cites some other reports. For example, the police center in Rotterdam is operated by the Public Security Bureau of Lishui, in China’s Zhejiang province. Meanwhile, the Chinese Police Center in Amsterdam is linked to Fuzhou in Fujian Province. These two eastern coastal areas are the main source of Chinese immigration to Europe.
Local authorities have found evidence that the “overseas service stations” are being used to silence Chinese dissidents in Europe. These stations were previously said to provide diplomatic services.
According to Eurativ, a network of 13 European capitals, Austria has announced that they want to investigate the police stations set up by China abroad. An Interior Ministry spokesman told the APA news agency, [quote] “There is no doubt that we will under no circumstances tolerate illegal activities by foreign intelligence services or police authorities.” [end quote]
The report mentions Vienna. This center is claimed to be one of several unofficial Chinese government police stations in Europe. It has a long history as an espionage center and is attractive to the activities of foreign security services.
Austria didn’t reveal the number of illegal Chinese police stations. However, other nations of the 14 countries have confirmed the investigations into these ‘service stations.”
Germany has released a report in which Nancy Faeser, a spokeswoman for the ministry of department head, confirmed that they were considering how to proceed with the investigation.
China has also reached other countries such as Argentina, Brazil, Brunei, Cambodia, Ecuador, France, Greece, Hungary, Japan, Lesotho, Mongolia, Serbia, Slovakia, Tanzania, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. However, the local authorities have yet to respond to the reports of PRC overseas police service centers on their territories.
China’s purpose in setting up overseas police stations
Safeguard Defenders stated that, besides helping overseas Chinese with administrative tasks, these police stations also serve the goal of “resolutely cracking down on all kinds of illegal and criminal activities involving overseas Chinese.”
So far, 230,000 Chinese have been “persuaded to go back to China.” Online reports and experts claim the goal of the expansion is to control the activities of Chinese residents abroad.
Peter Dahlin, the founder of Defenders, said in an interview with Chinese language media outlet Xin Tang Ren, “The most common method is to persuade them to return voluntarily. We’ve had some cases where they’ve sent agents, Chinese police, undercover to the target country, and some people have been prosecuted for that in the United States. And the third way is to use kidnapping. We researched and found 22 cases of kidnapping.”
Chinese authorities issued a document urging suspects in cross-border gambling to surrender in exchange for reduced penalties on January 26, 2021. The deadline was set for April 30, 2021.
In the “110 Overseas Chinese Transnational Policing Gone Wild” report, such police stations have been backed by the Chinese Police Bureau back in China to convince Chinese dissidents to return home. A report entitled “Involuntary Returns” specifically mentioned “persuasion to return” as a key technique in China’s large-scale involuntary repatriation (IR) operations.
Two tactics the CCP has been using to convince these people to go back home include:
- Track down the target’s family members: This is to pressure them through intimidation, harassment, detention, or imprisonment into persuading their family members to return “voluntarily.”
- Direct or indirect approaches: The overseas Chinese dissidents have been either directly contacted online or through the deployment of undercover agents. They have been threatened and harassed to go back “voluntarily.”
The CCP and its security organs can use these methods to circumvent standard bilateral mechanisms of police and judicial cooperation. As a result, they seriously undermine international law and third-party countries’ territorial integrity.
Consider the case of Wang Jing Yu. Wang was summoned last February, according to Chinese language media outlet Da Ji Yuan. Chinese authorities detained his parents, raided their home, fired them from their positions in state-owned enterprises, and assaulted them.
Wang told the reporters that he couldn’t reach his parents on February 27 last year.
Li Gang, another Chinese living in New York, was also on a “red notice.” He said, “Because someone found my place. With my picture, my landlord said, “What do you want him for? I didn’t have any accident, I can say for sure, that’s a lie.”
Then in January 2019, in Houston, Li Gang said he went to his wife’s house, and there were two men, one white and one Asian. They lied and said, “We are the FBI. We are here to protect Li Gang.”
Experts’ opinions on China’s attempt to expand overseas police force
Upon China’s attempt to expand its police force overseas, some experts have raised their voices while others call for Americans’ support for the Chinese dissidents.
As reported by Reuters, congressmen Greg Murphy and Mike Waltz sent letters to see if President Joe Biden has started the investigation. They argued these stations could be used to intimidate U.S. residents of Chinese origin.
FBI Director Christopher Wray told lawmakers that the United States is deeply concerned about the CCP’s establishment of unlicensed “police stations” in U.S. cities to conduct influential activities. He said, [quote] “It is outrageous to think that the Chinese police would attempt to set up shop, you know, in New York, let’s say, without proper coordination. It violates sovereignty and circumvents standard judicial and law enforcement cooperation processes.” [end quote]
Under such situations, if the CCP fails to detect reactions from other nations, they will continue the expansion.
Former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke in a new short video in a series called “Americans must always stand with freedom-loving Chinese people,” released by the China Center of the Hudson Institute. Pompeo directly spoke to Chinese people in the series. He called on the American people to “always stand with the freedom-loving Chinese people.”
According to Pompeo, Chinese dissidents must be heard. He said, [quote] “Americans must always stand with freedom-loving people around the world. They need us to do that.” [end quote]
Pompeo had promised to meet with as many Chinese dissidents as possible when he was secretary of state. He said that some Chinese dissidents escaped the Chinese regime’s hostile takeover of once-free Hong Kong while others fled to Tibet or Xinjiang.
This move of the CCP proves their ambition to expand their global influence. Moreover, the practices violate laws and human rights when using family members to pressure Chinese dissidents and force them to return.