Asia

China criticizes Taiwan for releasing fraud suspects

FILE - In this April 13, 2016, file photo released by Xinhua News Agency, Chinese and Taiwanese suspects involved in wire fraud, center, sit in a plane as they arrive at the Beijing Capital International Airport in Beijing, China. Taiwan on Friday was trying to prevent Malaysia from deporting 52 Taiwanese criminal suspects to China amid an ongoing battle over jurisdiction involving the self-ruled island. (Yin Gang/Xinhua News Agency via AP, File) NO SALES

FILE - In this April 13, 2016, file photo released by Xinhua News Agency, Chinese and Taiwanese suspects involved in wire fraud, center, sit in a plane as they arrive at the Beijing Capital International Airport in Beijing, China. Taiwan on Friday was trying to prevent Malaysia from deporting 52 Taiwanese criminal suspects to China amid an ongoing battle over jurisdiction involving the self-ruled island. (Yin Gang/Xinhua News Agency via AP, File) NO SALES  (The Associated Press)

A Chinese spokesman has criticized Taiwan after the self-ruled island released 20 fraud suspects just one day after they were deported from Malaysia, citing a lack of evidence.

China and Taiwan have been tussling over which side would prosecute an international ring of Taiwanese who allegedly targeted hundreds of mainland Chinese in telephone scams.

Malaysia authorities on Friday deported 20 suspects despite protests from China, which claims jurisdiction because its citizens were victimized.

The spokesman for the Chinese State Council's Taiwan Affairs Office An Fengshan said Saturday that Taiwan had "disregarded many victims' interests and harmed them a second time" after releasing the suspects, and urged Taiwan to "immediately rectify their mistakes."

Earlier this month Kenya sent 45 Taiwanese fraud suspects to China instead of Taiwan, infuriating Taipei officials.