News / Asia

    French National in China for Questioning in Bo Scandal

    Photo of Keystone House, an office block believed to be the living place of Gu Kailai, wife of China's former Chongqing Municipality Communist Party Secretary Bo Xilai, is seen in Bournemouth, England, April 18, 2012.Photo of Keystone House, an office block believed to be the living place of Gu Kailai, wife of China's former Chongqing Municipality Communist Party Secretary Bo Xilai, is seen in Bournemouth, England, April 18, 2012.
    x
    Photo of Keystone House, an office block believed to be the living place of Gu Kailai, wife of China's former Chongqing Municipality Communist Party Secretary Bo Xilai, is seen in Bournemouth, England, April 18, 2012.
    Photo of Keystone House, an office block believed to be the living place of Gu Kailai, wife of China's former Chongqing Municipality Communist Party Secretary Bo Xilai, is seen in Bournemouth, England, April 18, 2012.
    Luke Hunt
    PHNOM PENH — A French architect detained in Cambodia for several weeks has flown to Shanghai where he is wanted for questioning in connection with the biggest political scandal to hit China in decades.
     
    Patrick Devillers was initially arrested here following a request from China where authorities are engaged in the high-profile investigation of disgraced politician Bo Xilai and his wife Gu Kailai.
     
    Chinese authorities are believed to be interested in questioning Devillers about his relationship with Gu Kailai, who is under investigation for last year’s murder of British businessman Neil Heywood.
     
    Cambodia authorities detained Devillers on June 13, but did not charge him with any crime. Authorities say he was taken to Phnom Penh International Airport on Monday night where he boarded a flight of his own free will.

    In Paris, Alexis Berthier, the assistant spokesperson for the French ministry of foreign affairs told VOA that Devillers chose to go to China after consulting with lawyers and Chinese authorities, but French diplomats were not present for the meeting.  
     
    "He made his decision about going back to China after discussions with the Chinese authorities. He informed us that he received some guarantees about what would be going on once he gets to China," said Berthier. "So after this what we can do as the French diplomatic corps is that we can guarantee that he gets full consular protection while he is there."

    Berthier said he could not comment if Devillers was under duress when he made the decision, and was not able to say whether or not Devillers would be under some sort of detention while in Beijing.
     
    Ray Leos is a local political commentator and Dean of Communications at Pannasastra University here in Phnom Penh. He said Devillers late night flight should not come as a surprise while his fate will be monitored closely from abroad.
     
    “Well it remains to be seen but I will say that by all indications Mr. Devillers left of his own accord of his own free will. With regards to Cambodia and China over the last 20 years or so they have had a very close relationship,” said Leos.
     
    Devillers had lived in the city of Dalian in the early 1990s when Bo was mayor and is believed to have had business ties with the politician who had been a rising star in the party.
     
    The scandal surrounding Bo, the former leader of the southwestern Chinese city of Chongqing, first broke several months ago when Bo was stripped of his post as Communist Party secretary in Chongqing and later his wife placed under arrest.

    You May Like

    Top US General: Turkish Media Report ‘Absurd'

    General Dunford rejects ‘irresponsible' claims of coup involvement by former four-star Army General Campbell, who led NATO forces in Afghanistan before retiring earlier this year

    Video Saving Ethiopian Children Thought to Be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at efforts of one African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children

    Protests Over Western Troops Threaten Libyan 'Unity' Government

    Fears mount that Islamist foes of ‘unity' government plan to declare a revolutionaries' council in Tripoli

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora