Official Says Russian Ambassador To The UN Died Of A Heart Attack

FILE - In this Aug. 22, 2014, file photo, Russia's U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin speaks during a news conference at United Nations headquarters, to discuss the crisis in Ukraine. Churkin died Feb. 20, 2017 in New Yo... FILE - In this Aug. 22, 2014, file photo, Russia's U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin speaks during a news conference at United Nations headquarters, to discuss the crisis in Ukraine. Churkin died Feb. 20, 2017 in New York. The New York City medical examiner's office said Friday, March 10, 2017, that it will not release the cause and manner of Churkin's death, as requested by the U.S. State Department, because his diplomatic immunity survives his death. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File) MORE LESS
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A senior New York City official briefed by the medical examiner’s office says Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations died last month from a heart attack and no foul play was suspected.

The official was not authorized to reveal the cause of death and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Friday.

The New York City medical examiner’s office, citing diplomatic protocol, said Friday it was instructed not to publicly release the cause and manner of death for Ambassador Vitaly Churkin, who died suddenly last month after collapsing in his office.

A spokesman for Russia’s U.N. Mission said they regarded the decision not to publicly release the cause of death as one that “fully complies with the principles of inviolability of private life and diplomatic immunity.”

—Associated Press writers Jonathan Lemire and Colleen Long contributed.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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