clear
Wednesday July 26th, 2017 6:47PM

Russian UN ambassador's died from heart attack, source says

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — Russia's ambassador to the United Nations, who collapsed in his office last month, died from a heart attack, and no foul play was suspected, according to a senior city official briefed by the medical examiner's office.

The official was not authorized to reveal the cause of death for Ambassador Vitaly Churkin and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Friday after the medical examiner's office, citing diplomatic protocol, said it was instructed not to publicly release the cause of death.

An autopsy was performed on Churkin last month, but the death required further study. The additional tests had been completed, but Julie Bolcer, spokeswoman for the city's medical examiner, said that the city's law department told the office not to release any further information, "in order to comply with international law and protocol."

The State Department asked the city in writing on Feb. 24 to not reveal the autopsy results, because Churkin's diplomatic immunity survives his death.

"The United States insists on the dignified handling of the remains of our diplomatic personnel who pass away abroad (including in Russia) and works to prevent unnecessary disclosures regarding the circumstances of their deaths," wrote James Donovan, minister counselor for host country affairs for the U.S. mission to the United Nations.

In a follow-up letter on March 1, the State Department noted that the Russian Federation raised concerns after the autopsy had been conducted, and "voluntary statements reported in the media about Ambassador Churkin's medical history" prompted complaints from Russian diplomats.

"The information reported was very private in nature and included information about which even they had no knowledge," Donovan wrote in the follow-up letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio's international affairs office.

A spokesman for Russia's U.N. Mission said: "We regard the decision of the New York City Law Department as the one that fully complies with the principles of inviolability of private life and diplomatic immunity."

The medical examiner is responsible for investigating deaths that occur by criminal violence, accident, suicide, suddenly or when the person seemed healthy, or if someone died in any unusual or suspicious manner. City policy is to publicly release the cause of death.

Donovan argued that state policies could be overruled by federal authority where "it creates an obstacle to the achievement of the President's foreign policy as reflected in an international agreement."

Churkin, who died Feb. 20 at a hospital at age 64, had been Russia's envoy at the U.N. since 2006. He was the longest-serving ambassador on the Security Council, the U.N.'s most powerful body.

He was buried in Moscow, where he was praised by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov praised as an "exceptional professional and people's diplomat." The Order of Courage, a medal awarded posthumously to Churkin by President Vladimir Putin, was displayed at his coffin.

___

Associated Press writer Edith M. Lederer at the United Nations contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: U.S. News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Health, AP Health - Senior Health
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
FBI missed rigged jackpot in 2006 before lottery scheme grew
A 2006 FBI inquiry has emerged as a missed opportunity to stop a jackpot rigging scandal that corrupted the nation's $70 billion lottery industry for years while enriching a tiny group of insiders
7:33AM ( 1 hour ago )
Indiana Christian school at center of LGBT voucher debate
Indiana Christian school at center of national debate on whether private voucher programs can discriminate against LGBT students
3:43AM ( 5 hours ago )
Trump attorney says president not under investigation
A member of the president's outside legal team says Donald Trump is not under federal investigation as part of the Russia probe
3:13AM ( 5 hours ago )
U.S. News
Confirmation of Serbia's first gay premier thrown into doubt
The ruling conservatives say that if Serbia's Prime Minister-designate Ana Brnabic does not get enough votes to be confirmed by parliament as the first openly gay person to head the country's government, early general elections would be held
8:45AM ( 26 minutes ago )
The Latest: Germany: London attack "an act of blind hatred"
The German government is offering its condolences over an attack on worshippers outside a London mosque, which it says appears to have been an act of "blind hatred."
8:39AM ( 32 minutes ago )
Man plows van into crowd by London mosque; 10 injured
A man plowed a van into a crowd of Muslim worshippers outside a north London mosque early Monday in an attack that police say they are investigating as a terrorist incident
8:28AM ( 43 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
The Latest: London faith leaders hold moment of silence
The chairman of the Finsbury Park Mosque and other faith leaders in London have held a moment of silence for victims of a driver who plowed into a crowd of worshippers leaving a Ramadan prayer service.
7:55AM ( 1 hour ago )
White man plows van into crowd by London mosque; 10 injured
Police in London are calling for calm after a driver plowed into a crowd of Muslim worshippers outside a north London mosque
7:49AM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: UK PM praises bravery of people outside mosque
Prime Minister Theresa May has praised the bravery of members of the public who detained driver of a van that plowed into a crowd of worshippers outside a mosque
7:47AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
China bans more synthetic opioids blamed for US drug deaths
China has announced it is banning a deadly synthetic opioid called U-47700 and three other synthetic drugs
3:13AM ( 5 hours ago )
Southwest US preps for 120 temps: Water, water, more water
A potentially record-shattering heat wave is rolling into the Southwest U.S., threatening to bring 120-degree temperatures to parts of Arizona and California
5:10PM ( 2 days ago )
Judge allows lawsuit on life-ending drugs for terminally ill
A judge on Friday allowed a legal challenge to proceed against California's law letting terminally ill patients seek prescriptions for life-ending drugs
2:36PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Health
The Latest: Kuwait's urges Qatar emir to exercise restraint
Kuwait's ruler is calling on Qatar to exercise self-restraint in its dispute with Saudi Arabia and other regional nations, issuing a statement just hours after a senior Saudi royal arrived in Kuwait with a message from the Saudi king
4:46PM ( 1 week ago )
Medicare plans to replace Social Security numbers on cards
Gov't to replace Social Security numbers on Medicare cards to protect seniors against identity theft
2:43PM ( 2 weeks ago )
Poll: Most older Americans want Medicare for long-term care
AP Poll: Most older Americans want Medicare to cover costs of long-term care for older adults
4:37AM ( 3 weeks ago )
AP Health - Senior Health
FBI missed rigged jackpot in 2006 before lottery scheme grew
A 2006 FBI inquiry has emerged as a missed opportunity to stop a jackpot rigging scandal that corrupted the nation's $70 billion lottery industry for years while enriching a tiny group of insiders
7:33AM ( 1 hour ago )
Indiana Christian school at center of LGBT voucher debate
Indiana Christian school at center of national debate on whether private voucher programs can discriminate against LGBT students
3:43AM ( 5 hours ago )
Trump attorney says president not under investigation
A member of the president's outside legal team says Donald Trump is not under federal investigation as part of the Russia probe
3:13AM ( 5 hours ago )
Closing arguments in ex-police officer's murder retrial
Jurors will soon begin trying to decide the fate of a white former University of Cincinnati police officer in his murder retrial
12:19AM ( 8 hours ago )
Cosby judge could revisit issue of revealing names of jurors
The names of the jurors who failed to reach a verdict in Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial have not been made public, but the judge could revisit the issue as early as Monday
12:10AM ( 9 hours ago )