From assassinations to spyware to the intimidation of family members, autocracies use the means of transnational repression to silence exiles and opponents around the world. Unfortunately, one tool used by abusive regimes to harass citizens abroad is Interpol itself.
Interpol, the international organisation of police agencies, plays an important role in promoting cooperation against genuine crime. However, it has also been manipulated by its autocratic members into an instrument of transnational repression, and a recent report by Freedom House emphasizes and details the reality of this abuse.
A 2019 Congressional hearing with the U.S. Helsinki Commission led to the introduction of the TRAP Act, which would reform U.S. policy towards Interpol, in both the House and Senate. This legislation would be a critical tool against abuse of the system, but more needs to be done.