HERZLIYA (VINnews) — China’s Ambassador to Israel, Du Wei, has been found dead in his Herzliya apartment. Israeli police have launched an investigation but initial findings suggested no foul play. The cause of death appears to be a cardiac incident, as the envoy was found dead in his bed by staff at his residence with no signs of violence on him.
Mr Du, 57, was only appointed ambassador in February having previously served as envoy to Ukraine. The ambassador was married and had a son but his family had still to join him in Israel. He was living in the Tel Aviv suburb of Herzliya.
In an interview with Israeli newspaper Makor Rishon last month, Mr Du said China was being made the world’s scapegoat.
“In history, more than once, a certain group of people was accused of spreading pandemics.” Du said. “That is despicable and should be condemned. The disease is an enemy of the entire humankind and the world should fight it together.”
On Friday, his embassy made a scathing attack on US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who had criticized China’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic on his visit to Israel.
The embassy stated that China “has never covered up the outbreak” and added “Historical experience also shows that pandemic is accompanied by conspiracies and the dark mentality of seeking scapegoats. Jewish friends know it well.”
The spokesperson for the Chinese Embassy added in the Friday statement that U.S. Secretary of states Mike Pompeo has for years been labeling Chinese products, investments and people as security risks without producing any evidence to support his claims, “we trust that our Jewish friends are not only able to defeat the coronavirus but also the ‘political virus,’ and choose the course of action that best serves its interests.”
The Embassy described the relations between the countries as “win-win in nature,” and claimed the assertions of a Chinese “buy up” of Israel was ridiculous, as “China’s investment in Israel only accounts for 0.4 percent of China’s investment across the world and 3% of the foreign investment flown into Israel.”