The 58-year old diplomat was appointed to the country back in February, after serving as envoy to Ukraine. He didn’t meet the Israeli president right after his arrival, instead staying in a 14-day quarantine, as the COVID-19 pandemic was already raging across the globe.
According to preliminary reports, Chinese Ambassador Du Wei was found dead in bed in his apartment on Sunday morning. The cause of his death remains unknown.
— ISCResearch (@ISCResearch) May 17, 2020
The Chinese Embassy, however, said that it cannot confirm the reports at the moment.
The Israeli police have launched an investigation into the circumstances of his sudden death.
Magen David Adom paramedics report no signs of violence on Chinese ambassador Du Wei, who was found dead overnight in his Herzliya residence, according to Channel 12 news.
They are reportedly treating the death as a result of heart failure.
Foreign Ministry Director-General Yuval Rotem spoke to China’s Deputy Ambassador to Israel Dai Yuming, and expressed his condolences over the ambassador’s death.
Rotem said the Foreign Ministry will help in any way necessary.
The 57-year-old ambassador was a husband and father to a boy. His family is not in the country with him.
He arrived in Israel to hold the position of ambassador in February, having served as Chinese ambassador to Ukraine before that.
He had written an article for The Jerusalem Post a few days prior to his death about the resilience of the Chinese and Israeli people alike.
Wei’s death comes one week after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited Israel in what seemed to be an attempt to convince the government to limit Chinese investments.
The spokesperson for the Chinese embassy in Israel, Wang Yongjun, wrote an opinion editorial for the Post after his visit, calling Pompeo’s claims and comments “absurd.”
“Historical experience also shows that pandemic is accompanied by conspiracies and the dark mentality of seeking scapegoats,” Yongjun said.
“Jewish friends know it well.”
Original: SPUTNIK & TOI