The head of Chinese central government’s liaison office in Macau has died in a fall from his home, Beijing authorities said on Sunday.
Zheng Xiaosong had been “suffering from depression”, according to a statement issued by the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office (HKMAO), in Beijing.
The 59-year-old took up the post of director last year. Before that he was a deputy director at the Communist Party’s International Liaison Department.
In a brief press release, the Beijing office said Zheng “died on Saturday from a fall from his Macau residence … because he suffered from depression”.
Reuters Said that the Beijing press release imply he had killed himself.
No further details were given on Zheng’s condition before his death.
Speaking on Sunday afternoon, Macau’s Director of the Judiciary Police Sit Chong-meng refused to say whether the death was being investigated.
He said the case was being processed according to established procedures and that he had no further information to offer.
Top officials from Macau and Hong Kong on Sunday sent their condolences to Zheng’s family.
Zheng held multiple positions there between 2013 and 2016, including that of secretary of the party’s Fujian provincial committee.
In a brief statement, Macau Chief Executive Chui Sai-on described Zheng’s passing as “unfortunate”.
According to the liaison office in Macau, Zheng had been on duty the day before his death. He had met representatives of a think tank in the city at his office.
Zheng was involved in talks in the 1990s between Britain and China on political reform in Hong Kong in the run-up to the transfer of administration in 1997.
Between 1993 and 1996 he was secretary to Jiang Enzhu, a former deputy director of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.