Asia

Sok An, right-hand man of Cambodia's Hun Sen, dies at 66

  • FILE - In this Sept. 2, 2013, file photo, Cambodia Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, left, stands as Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen talks with officials at Phnom Penh International Airport in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. A government statement said Wednesday, March 15, 2017, that Sok An, who was one of Prime Minister Hun Sen's closest political and personal allies, has died at age 66. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith, File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 2, 2013, file photo, Cambodia Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, left, stands as Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen talks with officials at Phnom Penh International Airport in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. A government statement said Wednesday, March 15, 2017, that Sok An, who was one of Prime Minister Hun Sen's closest political and personal allies, has died at age 66. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this March 26, 2015, file photo, Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, center, prays at the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum memorial in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. A government statement said Wednesday, March 15, 2017, that Sok An, who was one of Prime Minister Hun Sen's closest political and personal allies, has died at age 66. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith, File)

    FILE - In this March 26, 2015, file photo, Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, center, prays at the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum memorial in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. A government statement said Wednesday, March 15, 2017, that Sok An, who was one of Prime Minister Hun Sen's closest political and personal allies, has died at age 66. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this June 16, 2013, photo, Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, left, talks with Prime Minister Hun Sen, right, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. A government statement said Wednesday, March 15, 2017, that Sok An, who was one of Prime Minister Hun Sen's closest political and personal allies, has died at age 66. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith)

    In this June 16, 2013, photo, Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, left, talks with Prime Minister Hun Sen, right, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. A government statement said Wednesday, March 15, 2017, that Sok An, who was one of Prime Minister Hun Sen's closest political and personal allies, has died at age 66. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith)  (The Associated Press)

Sok An, a deputy prime minister of Cambodia who was one of Prime Minister Hun Sen's closest political and personal allies, has died at age 66.

A government statement said he died of illness Wednesday at a hospital in Beijing. He had been absent from public life for several months and was widely understood to be undergoing medical treatment.

In 1980, Sok An became a personal secretary to Hun Sen when he was foreign minister in a government installed by Vietnam, which ousted the Khmer Rouge from power in 1979. He was best known internationally for negotiating with the United Nations to hold a tribunal to try leaders of the Khmer Rouge for genocide and other crimes. One of his sons is married to one of Hun Sen's daughters.