China mourns death of German Envoy Jan Hecker

BEIJING: Chinese Foreign Ministry expressed deep condolences to the sudden death of the German Ambassador to China Jan Hecker, who has passed away after only two weeks in the role after being appointed in August.
“We are shocked to learn of the sudden death of Ambassador Jan Hecker, who had been working actively to promote China-Germany relations since assuming his post. We mourn and regret his passing and extend sincere condolences to his loved ones,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Monday at the regular press conference.
China would like to provide as much convenience as possible for Hecker’s family and the German Embassy in China to deal with the follow-up matters, Wang said.
Hecker’s death was confirmed by the German Embassy on Monday, with a website statement saying “It is with deep sadness and consternation that we heard the sudden death of the German ambassador to China, Prof. Dr. Jan Hecker. At this moment, our thoughts are with his family, relatives, friends and colleagues.”
Without revealing details of Hecker’s death, the embassy lowered German national flag and EU flag in front of the embassy’s building in Beijing, at half-mast, Global Times found. On September 3, the last working day before Hecker’s death, the ambassador presided over the opening ceremony of a cultural event that marks the birth centennial of Joseph Beuys, a revolutionary German curator, at the residence of the German Embassy in China. A group of teachers and students from the Central Academy of Fine Arts also attended the event, some described the ambassador as “easy-going,” media reported. Before taking up the post, Hecker, 54, was a foreign policy advisor to German long-serving Chancellor Angela Merkel who will leave office after the upcoming election. Hecker took the office on August 24. In a statement posted in August by the German embassy on his new role, Hecker said he hoped to contribute to the long-term and stable development of Germany-China relations, which is in the interest of both peoples, and China and Germany should enhance dialogue and cooperation.
– The Daily Mail-Global Times News exchange item