Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for Ghana

Newsline: Ghana police declare 3 Nigerians wanted over kidnapping of diplomat

The Ghana Police Service has declared three Nigerians wanted over the alleged kidnap of the Consular – General and Head of Mission of Estonia to the West African country. Popular Accra-based radio station Starr FM reported that police rescued the 61-year-old foreign envoy after he was reportedly kidnapped in the early hours of Thursday, April 18 while on his regular morning walk in the nation’s capital city Accra. (https://www.legit.ng/1234656-ghana-police-declare-3-nigerians-wanted-alleged-kidnapping-diplomat.html) According to the report, the diplomat was rescued on Friday, April 19 by a Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team following a tip off.

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Newsline: Ghana to open an embassy in Norway

Ghana will soon open an embassy in Norway to boost bilateral relations between the two countries. This was revealed by Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchway, Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, during an interview with Class 91.3FM’s Executive Breakfast Show host Moro Awudu in New York following a meeting between President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Norway Premier Erna Solberg – both co-Chairs of the Advocacy Group of Eminent Persons for the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Ms Botchway said Norway already has an embassy in Ghana and noted that the West African country will also put up one in Oslo, the Norwegian capital.

https://www.businessghana.com/site/news/general/173020/Ghana-to-open-an-embassy-in-Norway

Newsline: Ghana embassy staff arrested in Madrid for counterfeiting

At the head of the organisation was a Ghanaian citizen, whom the agents had been following for years: “He has a history of fraud, forgery and drug trafficking”. Passports for 600 euros, residence permits for 300 and driving tests for 2,000. These were the fees of a criminal organization dedicated to falsifying documents, a network that was dismantled Wednesday after 46 people were arrested in 11 cities. According to El Confidencial, sources from the National Police, the body that has taken charge of the operation, the tentacles of the plot reached the Ghanaian embassy, where two of its workers were in charge of providing them with all kinds of documents.

https://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/Ghana-embassy-staff-arrested-in-Madrid-for-counterfeiting-646380

Newsline: US Embassy in Ghana suspected of having tunnel to airport

Chairman of the People’s National Convention (PNC), Bernard Mornah says he has every reason to suspect that the new constructed American Embassy at Cantonment has a huge tunnel from the Embassy to the Kotoka International Airport. According to him, “My suspicion is that, it is possible that there may be a tunnel from that place to the airport. It is my suspicion; I have not heard it but that is my suspicion because every evening between 6pm to 8pm around American Embassy, you will see the soldiers running around jogging and it is obvious that it is not just the face that we see that is where they are staying. It means they are staying underneath.” The PNC Chairman stressed that the Americans have too much liberty to the extent that three roads have been blocked permanently against the directives of Town and Country Planning in order to construct the American Embassy.

https://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/I-suspect-Americans-have-a-tunnel-from-their-Embassy-to-Kotoka-Airport-PNC-Chair-637996

Newsline: The true story of the fake US embassy in Ghana

On Friday 2 December 2016, a curious story appeared on the website GhanaBusinessNews.com. “Ghana security authorities shut down fake US Embassy in Accra,” the headline declared. For a decade, the story went, there had been a fake US embassy in the Ghanaian capital. The fraudsters behind it had flown the American flag from their building and even hung a portrait of Barack Obama on the wall. The criminal network behind the scam had advertised on billboards and prowled the most remote villages of west Africa, searching for gullible customers. They brought them to Accra, and sold them visas for as much as $6,000. According to a US state department statement, which had been published in early November, the fake embassy was operated by “figures from both Ghanaian and Turkish organized crime rings and a Ghanaian attorney practicing immigration and criminal law”. The American authorities supplied a picture of an old, two-storey pink building with a tin roof, originally captioned: “The exterior of the fake embassy in Accra, Ghana.” The caption was later changed to: “One of several buildings used by the disrupted fraud ring.” Reuters reported that the Americans, with the help of the Ghana Detectives Bureau, had raided the fake embassy. Several people were arrested, and officials seized 150 passports from 10 different countries. The US state department said, the number of fraudulent documents coming from west Africa had gone down by 70% as a result of this and other raids, and “criminal leaders no longer have the political cover they once had”. But the story was fake. It might have started with a diplomatic cable – a classified memo – sent from the US embassy in Accra to the state department in Washington DC on 25 July 2016, titled “Ghana: Fake US Embassy Closed for Business.” When I asked the US state department for comment, an official simply told me that US Diplomatic Security Service officials work with Ghanaian authorities to uphold the integrity of the visa system. The state department declined to provide additional information in response to specific questions.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/nov/28/the-true-story-of-the-fake-us-embassy-in-ghana

Newsline: Fake U.S. Embassy in Ghana Issued Real Visas for a Decade

For ten years, a U.S. embassy operated quietly in Accra, the capital of the West African country of Ghana. The facility’s work was discreet because it was run by a criminal network of Ghanaian and Turkish citizens. The embassy wasn’t an embassy at all, but it managed to issue authentic, fraudulently obtained visas and other U.S. documents for a decade. The hitch is that these were in fact authentic documents and were issued by Turkish forgers for an average price of $6,000. The Department of State has not explained how the gang obtained genuine US visas.

https://globalvoices.org/2016/12/18/that-fake-u-s-embassy-in-ghana-issued-real-visas-for-a-decade/

Newsline: State Department says no visas from fake American embassy in Ghana used to enter US

None of the altered visas issued at a fake U.S. embassy in West Africa for seven years appears to have been used to enter the United States, the State Department said. State Department spokesman John Kirby said the visas were created from bought, stolen or otherwise illegally obtained passports. U.S. officials this summer discovered and shuttered the fake embassy in Accra, Ghana. However, news reports about the criminal operation began to appear only in the past several weeks, following a Nov. 2 posting on the State Department’s website. The embassy building flew a U.S. flag every morning for three days a week, and inside the building was a picture of President Obama.

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/12/05/fake-us-embassy-in-ghana-shut-down-after-about-decade.html