The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus Vladimir Makei died at the age of 64, the country’s foreign ministry announced on Saturday.
“Vladimir Makei, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus, passed away suddenly today,” the Foreign Ministry said on its official Facebook account, without providing further details on the circumstances surrounding of the Minister of Foreign Affairs death.
Makei was born in 1958 in the Belarusian region of Grodno. He had held the post since August 2012, according to his official biography on the Foreign Office website.
Makei was due to meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday, according to Russian media RIA Novosti.
President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko expressed condolences to Makei’s family and friends on Saturday, according to a statement posted on the presidential website.
The Russian Foreign Ministry added in a statement that it was “deeply shocked” by the news of his death.
“As head of the Foreign Ministry, he made a great contribution to strengthening Russian-Belarusian relations,” he said.
“As an established professional and a sincere patriot of his country, he firmly and effectively defended the interests of the Republic of Belarus on international platforms,” the ministry continued, adding that “this is a heavy and irreparable loss.” .