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Churkin's sudden death

By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Russia's long-time UN ambassador Vitaly Churkin dies in New York
Russia's long-time ambassador to the United Nations, Vitaly Churkin, died "suddenly" in New York on Monday, a day before his 65th birthday, Russia's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said.
Moscow (dpa) - "A great diplomat, an extraordinary person," spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a post on her Facebook page. "We have lost a loved one."

Churkin, who had served in the post for more than a decade, died at work, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"We express our deepest condolences to Vitaly Churkin‘s family and friends," the Foreign Ministry said.

Churkin, a career diplomat, had previously served as Russia‘s ambassador to Canada and Belgium before taking up the post at the UN in 2006.


Britain‘s Ambassador to the UN Matthew Rycroft says he was "absolutely devastated" at the news that his Russian counterpart, Vitaly Churkin, had died. Churkin was a "friend and colleague," a "diplomatic giant and wonderful character," Rycroft writes on Twitter. Britain‘s mission to the UN calls Churkin a pillar of the United Nations Security Council and sends its "deepest condolences to his family and colleagues," according to a post on Twitter.

US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley offers her condolences on the death of her Russian counterpart. "Ambassador Vitaly Churkin showed himself to be a gracious colleague," Haley says. "We did not always see things the same way, but he unquestionably advocated his country‘s positions with great skill," says Haley, who took up the post last month. The US ambassador says the United States sends its condolences "to lift up his family and to the Russian people."

Russian President Vladimir Putin is grieving after learning of the death of Churkin. "The head of state highly valued Churkin‘s professionalism and diplomatic talent," spokesman Dmitry Peskov says in comments carried by state media. The president expressed his condolences to Churkin‘s loved ones, the Kremlin says in a statement on its website.


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