Al Raisi
UAE's Major General Ahmed Nasser Al Raisi, the new president of Interpol. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Major General Ahmed Nasser Al Raisi has been elected as the president of Interpol today. The global policing agency held its annual meeting in Istanbul, Turkey, to discuss crime trends and to conduct its much-anticipated election for the post of the president of the agency.

Major General Al Raisi currently serves as Inspector General at the UAE Ministry of Interior. He was elected after he garnered 104 votes while his fellow candidate Czech police Col Sarka Havrankova got 47 votes at the General Assembly meeting.

‘Mr Ahmed Nasser Al Raisi of the United Arab Emirates has been elected to the post of President (4-yr term),’ the Interpol tweeted.

About 470 police chiefs, ministers and other representatives from more than 160 countries are attending the three-day General Assembly of Interpol, which is scheduled to vote later today to elect new executive committee members.

Al Raisi had said hours before the election that he would help build a more diverse, modern and collaborative Interpol. “The time has finally come for the vote for the Interpol presidency here at the General Assembly. This moment will culminate more than four decades of service, and if elected I will help to build a more diverse, modern and collaborative Interpol,” Al Raisi had tweeted earlier.

Congratulations pour in

Lt General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, praised Al Raisi, saying the world’s confidence in the UAE is a result of the wise leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.

“Thanks to our leadership on the world’s trust in the UAE,” Lt Gen Sheikh Saif bin Zayed tweeted.

Dr Anwar Gargash offered his congratulations to Al Raisi, saying his election bears testament to the UAE’s achievements and efficiency in law enforcement and appreciation for the great personal record of Al Raisi.

Lt Gen Abdullah Khalifa Al Merri, Commander-In-Chief of Dubai Police, also congratulated Al Raisi for being elected as the president of the Interpol. He wished him a successful and prosperous term.

Mysterious disappearance

The election for the post of the Interpol president was being followed closely since the first-ever Chinese president of the body, Meng Hongwei, disappeared midway through his four-year term on a return trip to China in 2018.

Interpol had then announced that Meng had resigned from the presidency.

Vice-president Kim Jong-Yan from South Korea was swiftly elected as a replacement to serve out the rest of Meng’s term. Kim’s presidency was due to end in 2020, but his tenure was extended by a year in view of the COVID-19 pandemic that forced Interpol to scrap its annual General Assembly last year.