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Stephen John Sackur
Stephen Sackur 02.JPG
Stephen Sackur at Stockholm Internet Forum 2014
Born (1964-01-09) 9 January 1964 (age 50)
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.


Stephen 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, Stephen 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]

Stephen 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] Stephen 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 Stephen 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 former the late President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of Brazil, People's Republic of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, President Felipe Calderón of Mexico, President Shimon Peres of Israel, Chairman Mahmoud Abbas of the PA, 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, Richard Dawkins, Noam Chomsky, Anwar Ibrahim, Annie Lennox, Vladimir Ashkenazy.

Stephen 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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9676 videos foundNext > 

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In a special edition of HARDtalk, recorded in front of an audience in the Indian capital Delhi, Stephen Sackur talks to one of India's most intriguing young ...

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9676 videos foundNext > 

30 news items

BBC News
Tue, 19 Aug 2014 21:52:30 -0700

Interviews with newsmakers and personalities from across the globe. Stephen Sackur talks to Bishop Angaelos of the Egyptian Coptic Church. Do Christians have a future in the Arab world? It's a question raised with a new sense of urgency as an ...
BBC News
Mon, 04 Aug 2014 04:25:59 -0700

Returning to Sarajevo with HARDtalk, Habsburg told Stephen Sackur that it is "very painful to see nationalist movements rising again" across Europe. He said those who have had experience of what nationalism can do are no longer very present in Europe, ...
BBC News
Tue, 29 Jul 2014 19:17:07 -0700

Hardtalk is in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia Herzegovina, to mark the centenary of the start of World War One. Stephen Sackur talks to Karl von Habsburg - the grandson of the last Habsburg Emperor. It was the assassination of his great uncle Archduke ...
BBC News
Mon, 04 Aug 2014 00:54:04 -0700

What does 'default' actually mean? Dispute has been raging in Argentina over what the country really owes to its international creditors - and what sort of role the world can or should play in lending to the 'global south'. Katy Watson tries to ...
BBC News
Wed, 30 Jul 2014 04:46:54 -0700

... Moldova which for the past two decades or so has been in the hands of pro-Russian separatists. Yevgeny Shevchuk, leader of the breakaway territory, tells Stephen Sackur why the problem of recognition is a political issue. Available since: Wed 30 ...
Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America
Tue, 29 Jul 2014 22:26:15 -0700

Compare that interview with this deferential performance on July 24 by the BBC's Stephen Sackur interviewing Hamas leader Khalid Meshall. Not a single interruption and just one slightly challenging question about storing rockets in UN schools in Gaza.

RT (blog)

RT (blog)
Fri, 01 Aug 2014 07:44:34 -0700

Last week, Mashal spoke to the BBC's Stephen Sackur, stating that "[w]e want a ceasefire as soon as possible, that is parallel with the lifting of the siege on Gaza. This is the demand of the Gazan people,” adding that "[t]here should be a genuine ...

CISTran Finance

CISTran Finance
Mon, 04 Aug 2014 01:09:40 -0700

Moldovan Prime Minister Iurie Leanca said last Thursday that the country's integration into the European Union would help stabilize southeastern Europe. In an interview with BBC World News host Stephen Sackur, Leanca said Moldovan citizens are ready to ...

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