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Ireland orders China to shut illegal ‘police station’ in Dublin

Ireland orders China to shut illegal ‘police station’ in Dublin

Human rights report increases pressure on Chinese surveillance tactics in Europe.
Ireland has ordered China to shut down a so-called police station in Dublin, after a human rights report released in September put a spotlight on Beijing’s extra-territorial pressure tactics.

Chinese authorities claimed the Fuzhou Police Service Overseas Station, which opened earlier this year in Dublin city center, offered diplomatic services to Chinese citizens in Ireland, such as the renewal of driving licenses.

But the report by human rights group Safeguard Defenders revealed that Chinese authorities set up such stations across the world, mainly in Europe, to pressure dissidents to return to China.

The Irish foreign ministry said China had not asked for permission to set up the station, and in recent weeks it subsequently asked the Chinese embassy to “close and cease operations” there.

“The Department noted that actions of all foreign states on Irish territory must be in compliance with international law and domestic law requirements,” an Irish government spokesman said. “On this basis, the department informed the embassy that the office on Capel Street should close and cease operations.”

China has now shut the station, the spokesman added.

Dutch media revealed details Wednesday about two illegal Chinese police stations in the Netherlands, which also promise to provide diplomatic services, but are reportedly being used to pressure Chinese dissidents.
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