TEL AVIV, Israel — China’s ambassador to Israel was found dead at his home early Sunday, Israeli diplomatic sources and police have confirmed to NBC News.
Du Wei, was discovered at his apartment in Herzliya, a town just north of Tel Aviv, they said. He was 57 years old.
Israeli police spokesperson Mickey Rosenfeld said officers were at the scene. He said from first assessment, the cause of death appears to be natural.
A spokesman for China’s foreign ministry said that a statement would be released when the ministry has “solid information” about what happened.
NBC News has contacted the Chinese Embassy in Tel Aviv for comment.
According to the embassy’s website, Du served as an attache to the Soviet Union in the early 1990s. He later served in the Chinese embassy in Estonia.
He has since then served in various posts with China’s foreign ministry and was involved in policy planning until 2016, when he assumed the role of China’s ambassador to Ukraine.
In February, he was appointed to serve as China’s ambassador to Israel.
Paul Goldman reported from Tel Aviv, Yuliya Talmazan from London and Eric Baculinao from Beijing.
Leou Chen contributed.