Interpol announced on Wednesday that Kim Jong-yang (C) of South Korea had been chosen as its new president, beating a Russian official whose candidacy had unnerved Western nations. Photo: AFP

Interpol has elected South Korean Kim Jong-yang as chief of the international law enforcement organization, following speculation that former Russian interior ministry chief Alexander Prokopchuk was favored to win the role.

Kim was serving as acting head of the agency, following the abrupt disappearance of former Interpol president Meng Hongwei, who China later revealed was detained under suspicion of corruption charges.

US lawmakers lobbied against the election of Prokopchuk to replace Meng, alleging that Moscow would abuse Interpol’s “red notice” system to pursue political opposition figures.

A spokesman for the Kremlin said that a letter from US Senators opposing Prokopchuk’s candidacy amounted to election meddling, Tass news agency reported.