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Belarusian Foreign Minister Makei dies suddenly at age 64

Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei, shown during a Moscow news conference on Nov. 10, 2021, has died suddenly, officials said Saturday. File Photo by Yuri Kochetkov/EPA-EFE/Pool
Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei, shown during a Moscow news conference on Nov. 10, 2021, has died suddenly, officials said Saturday. File Photo by Yuri Kochetkov/EPA-EFE/Pool

Nov. 26 (UPI) -- Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei has died suddenly at age 64, officials announced Saturday.

"Vladimir Makei, minister of foreign affairs of the Republic of Belarus, has suddenly passed away today," read a post on the ministry's Facebook page.

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No cause of death was disclosed.

A post on Telegram One, a channel close to the government of Belarus, said President Alexander Lukashenko "has offered his condolences to the family and friends of Vladimir Makei," Russia's official TASS news agency reported.

Makei was considered a close confidante to Lukashenko, whose regime has come under international pressure after violent crackdowns on protestors between 2020 and 2021. Belarus has also faced condemnation for allowing the Russian military to launch attacks on Ukraine from their territory.

The Belarusian government been sanctioned by the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

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