Tunisia health minister Slim Chaker dies after 500 metres charity run

Tunisia’s health minister, Slim Chaker

Tunisia’s health minister, Slim Chaker, 56, has died of a heart attack after taking part in a charity marathon to help fight cancer.

The minister fell ill after running some 500 metres, and died in a military hospital, the health ministry said.

Prime Minister Youssef Chahed said he had lost a “brother and colleague”, who had died doing a noble humanitarian act.

The marathon was held in the coastal town of Nabeul on Sunday to raise funds to build a cancer clinic for children.

Mr Chaker was appointed health minister last month in a major cabinet reshuffle.

He was a former banker who had served in the ministries of finance, sports and youth after the overthrow of long-serving ruler Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali in 2011.

Heart attack symptoms

  • Chest pain – a sensation of pressure, tightness or squeezing in the centre of the chest
  • Pain in other parts of the body – it can feel as if the pain is travelling from the chest to the arms (usually the left arm is affected, but it can affect both arms), jaw, neck, back and abdomen
  • Feeling lightheaded or dizzy
  • Sweating
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling sick (nausea) or being sick (vomiting)
  • Overwhelming sense of anxiety (similar to having a panic attack)
  • Coughing or wheezing

Although the chest pain is often severe, some people may only experience minor pain, similar to indigestion. In some cases, there may not be any chest pain at all, especially in women, elderly people and people with diabetes.


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