Russian ambassador to United Nations Vitaly Churkin passes away

Vitaly Churkin. Pic/AFP
Vitaly Churkin. Pic/AFP

Moscow: Russian Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Vitaly Churkin died on Monday in New York, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"The Russian Foreign Ministry is saddened to announce the death of Vitaly Churkin, Russia's Permanent Representative to the UN, on Monday in New York, a day before his 65th birthday," said the brief statement, without disclosing the cause of his death, Xinhua news agency reported.

The ministry expressed its condolences and hailed Churkin as an "outstanding diplomat," who has served as Russian envoy to the UN since 2006.

UN Secretary-General Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq said he was shocked by Churkin's sudden death and mourned him, RIA Novosti news agency reported.

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