cloudy
Saturday June 24th, 2017 2:59AM

Official: Russian UN ambassador's died from heart attack

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: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, 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.
Expulsion of Qataris from Gulf states comes into effect
Deadline for Qataris to leave neighboring Gulf Arab states comes into effect as standoff persists
8:09AM ( 20 minutes ago )
The Latest: Russia warns US after downing of Syrian jet
The Latest: Russia warns it will treat US coalition planes in Syria as targets after US military shot down Syrian jet
8:06AM ( 24 minutes ago )
The Latest: London fire deadliest in UK since 20th century
European researchers say that the Grenfell Tower disaster is now the deadliest fire in mainland Britain since they started keeping close records at the start of the 20th century
8:05AM ( 24 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
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 ( 56 minutes ago )
The Latest: PM responds to complaints about mosque response
Prime Minister Theresa May has responded to complaints from some in the Muslim community that police failed to quickly respond to the attack on the north London mosque and declare it terrorism
7:09AM ( 1 hour ago )
France's Macron to reshuffle govt after huge parliament win
French President Emmanuel Macron is set to rearrange his Cabinet after his new centrist party swept parliamentary elections
7:01AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
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 ( 4 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
12:12AM ( 8 hours ago )
Top U.S. News short headlines
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
Expulsion of Qataris from Gulf states comes into effect
Deadline for Qataris to leave neighboring Gulf Arab states comes into effect as standoff persists
8:09AM ( 20 minutes ago )
The Latest: Russia warns US after downing of Syrian jet
The Latest: Russia warns it will treat US coalition planes in Syria as targets after US military shot down Syrian jet
8:06AM ( 24 minutes ago )
The Latest: London fire deadliest in UK since 20th century
European researchers say that the Grenfell Tower disaster is now the deadliest fire in mainland Britain since they started keeping close records at the start of the 20th century
8:05AM ( 24 minutes ago )
Greek, Turkish leaders meet on tensions over Aegean flyovers
Greek, Turkish prime ministers discuss airspace violations in Aegean, issue of Turkish servicemen who have sought asylum in Greece
8:04AM ( 25 minutes ago )
AP Interview: F-35 fighter show is gesture to US allies
When the stealthy hi-tech F-35 tears through Paris skies on its first ever acrobatic displays this week, the jet will also be sending a message: NATO allies, the United States is still on your side
7:58AM ( 31 minutes ago )