Britain says any intimidation of foreign nationals by China or other states on its soil is unacceptable as it responded to a media report about a secret Chinese police station.
Britain has previously said that reports of undeclared police stations in the country were “extremely concerning” and the police were looking into the issue.
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This week, United States federal agents arrested two New York residents for allegedly operating a Chinese “secret police station” in the Chinatown district of Manhattan. China has said it firmly opposes what it called “the US’s slanders and smears”.
On Wednesday, Britain’s policing minister, Chris Philp, said the government was aware of about 100 such stations around the world.
“This government takes interference with foreign nationals here, transnational intimidation, extremely seriously,” he said. “It is completely unacceptable, and we will do whatever is necessary to stop it from happening.”
China’s embassy in Britain did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Reuters news agency.
The Chinese government has previously said there are centres outside China run by local volunteers, not Chinese police officers, that aim to help Chinese citizens renew documents and offer other services.
The Times reported on Tuesday that a Chinese businessman linked to what it called a secret police station in London had organised fundraising dinners for the governing Conservative Party.
The local Conservative Party association said it had reported the matter to security services last year and the man was no longer a member of their association.
Philp declined to comment on the case, which he said was under police investigation.
On the issue of possible political influence, he said: “All political parties need to be alert to the danger that representatives of hostile states seek to infiltrate or influence our activities”