LONG WAY TO GO:The Criminal Investigation Bureau acknowledged the US’ support and added that it would make every effort to join Interpol at international meetings
Staff writer, with CNA
The Interpol Global Complex for Innovation building in Singapore is pictured on April 14 last year.
US President Barack Obama on Friday signed a bill that requires the US secretary of state to develop a strategy to obtain observer status for Taiwan in the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) and other international groups.
“Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this act, the secretary shall transmit to [the US] Congress a report, in unclassified form, describing the United States strategy to endorse and obtain observer status for Taiwan in appropriate international organizations, including Interpol, and at other related meetings, activities and mechanisms thereafter,” according to the text of the new legislation.
The bill was sent to the White House for Obama to sign into law after it cleared the US House of Representatives and the US Senate earlier this month.
In Taipei, Taiwan’s Criminal Investigation Bureau expressed gratitude for the US’ support, but it added that there is still a long way to go before Taiwan can participate in Interpol.
The bureau said that it would continue to make every effort to join Interpol at international meetings.
Being unable to participate in Interpol makes it difficult for Taiwan to directly obtain updates on information about transnational crimes, the bureau said, adding that the nation must rely on second-hand information provided by other countries.
Taiwanese police are not allowed to take part in training organized by Interpol, it said.
Taiwan was a full member of Interpol starting in 1964 through its National Police Administration, but lost its membership in 1984, when China applied to join the organization.
Taiwan has had trouble gaining membership or participating in many international organizations because of objections from China, which sees Taiwan as a renegade province and therefore ineligible for membership as a separate entity.
In an effort to help Taiwan join international organizations, the US also passed a bill that supports Taiwan’s participation in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), which was signed into law by Obama in July 2013.
The head of Taiwan’s Civil Aeronautics Administration led a delegation to participate in the ICAO’s assembly as guests later that year, the first time Taiwan was invited to the UN specialized agency based in Montreal after the Republic of China lost its UN membership to China in 1971.