'Russian ambassador to UN died of heart attack'

Indo Asian News Service

New York, March 11 (IANS) The Russian Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin died of a heart attack, with no signs of foul play, a senior official said here.

"As outlined in formal requests from the US Department of State, Ambassador Churkin's diplomatic immunity survives his death. Further questions concerning this matter should be directed to the Department of State," Julie Bolcer, a spokeswoman for the city's Office of Chief Medical Examiner told CNN on Friday night.

However, earlier on Friday, the office said that it would not publicly disclose the cause and manner of Churkin's death because of diplomatic immunity laws.

Churkin died in New York City on February 20, a day before his 65th birthday.

He spent over 40 years in the diplomatic service and headed the Russian Mission to the UN for more than a decade.

--IANS

ksk/vm