US backs China's campaign to hunt down fugitives
Updated: 2015-04-12 07:37
Chinese State Councilor and Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun (R) shakes hands with US Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson during the first ministerial meeting between the Chinese Ministry of Public Security and the US Homeland Security Department in Beijing, China, April 9, 2015. [Photo/Xinhua]
BEIJING - The United States has agreed to streamline the procedure to repatriate Chinese corrupt officials abroad, after meetings between security officials from the world's two largest economies, China News Service reported Saturday, quoting a statement from the US Department of Homeland Security.
In the statement released Saturday, the department said that US Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson had reached an agreement with the Chinese side over simplifying the process to repatriate Chinese citizens who have received the final deportation orders.
The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will work closely with Chinese Ministry of Public Security to verify the real identity of Chinese citizens applying for travel documents and they will also ensure the arrangement of regular chartered flights to advance the repatriation process, according to the statement.
The official Xinhua News Agency also reported late Friday that the United States has promised support for China's campaign to hunt corrupt officials fleeing abroad.
Johnson visited China for the meetings between April 9 and 10, the first of its kind by a US Secretary of Homeland Security in nine years. Talks this week between Chinese domestic security leaders Meng Jianzhu and Guo Shengkun, and Jeh Johnson also touched on counter-terrorism, intellectual property rights, maritime law enforcement and cybersecurity issues, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.
Guo said the two sides should seek cooperation in law-enforcement, Xinhua said, and that both sides agreed they would not provide refuge to fugitives.
Chinese public security authorities said the United States supported Chinese programs dubbed "Sky Net" and "Operation Fox Hunt," which are meant to coordinate a campaign to track down suspected corrupt officials who have fled overseas and to recover their assets.
The Chinese government has given the United States a priority list of Chinese officials suspected of corruption and who are believed to have fled there, state media has reported.
Chinese officials have said more than 150 "economic fugitives" including corrupt government officials are in the United States.
China's anti-corruption watchdog said last month that more than 500 suspects were repatriated to China last year, along with more than 3 billion yuan ($484.32 million).
Chinese President Xi Jinping has said he aims to track down corrupt officials across sectors in a far-reaching campaign against graft.