Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, a close aide to Prime Minister Hun Sen for more than two decades, died of illness Wednesday, the government announced. He was 66.
Sok An, who served deputy prime minister since 2004, died at 6:32pm in a Beijing hospital, where he had received medical treatment over the past few days.
He suffered from kidney illness and had spent some months in a hospital in Singapore prior to his transfer to the one in the Chinese capital.
His body is due to arrive in Cambodia around 3 am today, a government source said. Hun Sen flew to Beijing on Monday, according to his aide.
Sok An had been a minister of the Office of the Council of Ministers since 1992, prior to which he served as secretary general of the Foreign Ministry, Cambodia's ambassador to India and deputy foreign minister, in that order.
As a minister, he was tasked with many important duties, ranging from overseeing the airline industry and archeological projects at the ancient temples of Angkor, to serving as chief negotiator with the United Nations on establishment of a Khmer Rouge.
He is survived by his wife and five children, including sons Sok Puthyvuth, who is among the country’s most prominent businessman, Sok Sokhan, who became a CPP lawmaker in 2015, and Sok Sangvar, a senior official at the Apsara Authority.//Kyodo