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Stephen Sackur
Stephen Sackur 02.JPG
Stephen Sackur at Stockholm Internet Forum 2014
Born Stephen John Sackur
(1964-01-09) 9 January 1964 (age 51)
Spilsby, Lincolnshire, England
Education Emmanuel College, Cambridge University, Harvard University
Occupation Journalist
Notable credit(s) BBC, foreign affairs correspondent
HARDtalk, host

Stephen John Sackur (born 9 January 1964) is an English journalist who presents HARDtalk, a current affairs interview programme on BBC World News and the BBC News Channel. He is also the main Friday presenter of GMT on BBC World News. For fifteen years he was a BBC foreign correspondent and he is a regular contributor to BBC Radio 4 and a number of newspapers and magazines.


Sackur was born in Spilsby, Lincolnshire, England, and studied at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.[1] He is married to an Iraqi,[2] Zina Sabbagh, and has three children.[3]


Sackur began working at the BBC as a trainee in 1986, and in 1990, he was appointed as one of its foreign affairs correspondents.[1][3] As a BBC Radio correspondent, Sackur reported on the Velvet Revolution of Czechoslovakia in 1989 and the reunification of Germany in 1990.[1] During the Gulf War, he was part of a BBC team covering the conflict and spent eight weeks with the British Army.[4] At the end of the war, he was the first correspondent to report the massacre of the retreating Iraqi army on the road leading out of Kuwait.[1]

Sackur was based in Cairo, Egypt, between 1992 and 1995 as the BBC's correspondent in the Middle East and he later moved to Jerusalem in 1995 until 1997.[3] He covered both the death of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and the growth of the Palestinian Authority under Yasser Arafat.[1]

Between 1997 and 2002, he was appointed the BBC's correspondent in Washington and covered the Lewinsky scandal. He later covered the U.S. Presidential Election in 2000 and interviewed President George W. Bush.[1] Sackur went back to Iraq in 2003 after the fall of Saddam Hussein and was the first to report Iraq's mass graves of victims of the regime.[1] He was also the moderator of BBC's worldwide broadcast of a debate on climate change with a panel of five world leaders from South Africa, the Maldives, Sweden, Australia and Mexico.

In 1991 he wrote On the Basra Road (London Review of Books).


In 2004 Sackur replaced veteran journalist Tim Sebastian as the regular host of the BBC's news programme HARDtalk. He has since interviewed prominent international personalities including President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh, President Felipe Calderón of Mexico, President Shimon Peres of Israel, Chairman Mahmoud Abbas of the PA, former Malaysian Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, President Jalal Talabani of Iraq, Greek former minister of Health Adonis Georgiadis, Prime Mininister of Moldova Iurie Leanca, US vice-president Al Gore, former US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates and a host of other leaders and politicians from around the world. He has also interviewed leading cultural figures including Gore Vidal, Slavoj Žižek, Richard Dawkins, Noam Chomsky, Anwar Ibrahim, Annie Lennox, and Vladimir Ashkenazy.

Sackur was named 'International TV Personality of the Year' by the Association for International Broadcasting (AIB) in November 2010.[5]

He was nominated as 'Speech Broadcaster of the Year' at the Sony Radio Awards 2013.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "NewsWatch: Stephen Sackur - HARDtalk". BBC News. 27 June 2006. 
  2. ^ Ian Henshall (5 December 2005). "BBC's Stephen Sackur Backs CIA Torture". Press Action. 
  3. ^ a b c "BBC - Press Office - Stephen Sackur". August 2008. Archived from the original on 11 February 2009. 
  4. ^ "HARDtalk - About Stephen Sackur". BBC News. 30 September 2009. 
  5. ^ "Stephen Sackur". Performing Artistes. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Sackur — Please support Wikipedia.
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812 news items


Sat, 21 Nov 2015 17:30:00 -0800

La entrevista del presidente Santos con el incisivo periodista inglés Stephen Sackur, del programa Hard Talk, fue interpretada inicialmente como un anuncio de que renunciaría si no fuera aprobado el plebiscito para la paz, aunque eso fue rápidamente ...

BBC News

BBC News
Wed, 18 Nov 2015 17:25:10 -0800

"If we sign the final agreement around March, let's say, then the plebiscite will be done a couple of months afterwards," he told the BBC's Stephen Sackur. Mr Santos insisted that if the agreement was to be rejected by Colombians, the deal with the ...

Huffington Post

Huffington Post
Tue, 17 Mar 2015 12:07:30 -0700

My guest today, Stephen Sackur, is a journalist I really respect and admire. With close to 3 decades of media experience behind him, Stephen is currently the host of BBC's flagship television and radio programme, HARDtalk, which puts global leaders and ...

Bloomberg View

Bloomberg View
Mon, 16 Nov 2015 08:09:48 -0800

The Islamic State is plotting more operations similar to the Paris attacks, the CIA director said Monday, asserting that Western governments and intelligence agencies are hampered in monitoring terrorist suspects and thwarting plots. Director John ...
Mon, 16 Nov 2015 22:45:00 -0800

My heart broke as I listened to Palestinian diplomat Saeb Erekat on the BBC's HARDtalk the other day. He confessed to the host, Stephen Sackur, that he had nothing to show for 23 years of negotiations except continued Israeli settlements. His words ...


Thu, 12 Nov 2015 03:55:27 -0800

A few days ago, Erekat again appeared on the BBC flagship program — a show hosted this time by Stephen Sackur. To his credit, Sackur asked some genuinely provocative questions, such as, “Why are so many mostly young Palestinians intent on killing ...
Redress Information & Analysis
Wed, 11 Nov 2015 13:56:15 -0800

Readers might not approve of Stephen Sackur's line of questioning in the video, described by one viewer as a grim cat-and-mouse set-up by the BBC. But knowing our national broadcaster's bias in favour of Israel it's no great surprise. Some journalists ...


Tue, 03 Nov 2015 09:06:09 -0800

Donaldson (centre) with Stephen Sackur, Margaret Doyle and Gillian Reynolds. Donaldson gave up the post of chief announcer and head of continuity at Radio 4 in 2003 and retired in 2005. He returned to the station on a freelance basis, but following ...

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