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Belarus – Belarusian Foreign Minister dies suddenly

News 360 logo News 360 26/11/2022 Daniel Stewart
Archive - Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei at the United Nations General Assembly. - UN / CIA PARK © Provided by News 360 Archive - Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei at the United Nations General Assembly. - UN / CIA PARK

Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei has died suddenly at the age of 64, BelTA news agency reported on Saturday.

According to the Belarusian news agency, Foreign Ministry spokesman Anatoly Glaz confirmed the news, although he did not add further details.

Pending official confirmation, sources of the Belarusian weekly Nasha Niva, one of the oldest in the country, indicate that the minister's death was due to a possible heart attack. The minister, according to the weekly, was scheduled to attend tomorrow a theatrical production of his wife, actress Vera Poliakova-Makei.

The minister, whose last known service was traveling to Armenia's capital Yerevan, had represented Belarusian diplomacy for the past ten years, since August 2012.

Considered to be a man close to the president, Alexander Lukashenko, he served between 2000 and 2008 as head of the Presidential Administration.

Prior to that, he worked in the internal bodies of the Ministry of Defense until 1993, and later served as a counselor at the Belarusian Embassy in France and Belarusian representative to the Council of Europe.

The Belarusian president has already sent his condolences to the minister's family and relatives, according to a statement reported by Belta.

The Russian government was the first international executive to express its condolences for Makei's death. "We are shocked by reports of the death of the Belarusian Foreign Minister," said Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova.

The Russian Embassy, for its part, recalled Makei's "great contribution" "to the strengthening of Russian-Belarusian relations, and to the construction and progressive development of the Union State," referring to the alliance formed by Russia and Belarus.

"As a recognized professional and a sincere patriot of his country, he firmly and effectively defended the interests of the Republic of Belarus on international platforms," the statement, picked up by Interfax, said.

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez expressed his deepest condolences to the people and government of Belarus, relatives and friends of the minister, as well as his Turkish counterpart, Mevlut Cavusoglu. "He was a good man and a good friend. I express my sincere condolences to the family of his deceased and to the people of Belarus. May his soul rest in peace."

Countries such as Kazakhstan, Iran or Venezuela have also joined the condolences through respective communiqués from their foreign ministries.

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