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Famous UK War Correspondent Robert Fisk Dies at 74

The award-winning journalist lived in the Arab world for over 40 years and covered war and conflict in the Middle East.
Robert Fisk

The multi-award-winning, veteran foreign correspondent Robert Fisk has died at the age of 74.

Fisk was admitted to St Vincent's Hospital in Dublin after suffering a suspected stroke, the Irish Times reported. He was taken to the hospital after falling ill on Friday.

In 2005, Fisk was described by theNew York Timesas "probably the most famous foreign correspondent in Britain".

Fisk held both Irish and British nationality. He was born in Maidstone, Kent in 1946, but later took Irish citizenship.

Since the 1970s, the journalist won several awards for his reporting on the Middle East, including multiple wins at the British Press Awards. He covered wars in the Balkans, Middle East and North Africa for UK newspapers over five decades.

In 1976, he shifted to Beirut and started working as a Middle East correspondent. He left The Times in 1989 after a dispute with owner Rupert Murdoch and started working at The Independent, where he spent for the rest of his career.

The Independent says Fisk, the paper's Middle East correspondent, worked based out of Beirut and “lived in the Arab world for more than 40 years, covering the war in Syria and Lebanon, five Israeli invasions, the Iran-Iraq war, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the Algerian civil war, Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait, the Bosnian and Kosovo wars, the American invasion and occupation of Iraq and the 2011 Arab revolutions.”

According to theBBC,Fisk also sparked controversy due to his criticism of the US and Israel, and of Western foreign policy.

Irish President Michael D Higgins expressed sadness over Fisk's death."With his passing the world of journalism and informed commentary on the Middle East has lost one of its finest commentators," Higgins said in astatement. "Generations, not only of Irish people but all over the world, relied on him for a critical and informed view of what was taking place in the conflict zones of the world and, even more important, the influences that were perhaps the source of the conflict," he added.

Fisk was a fluent Arabic speaker and was among the few Western journalists who interviewed infamous al-Qaida leader, Osama bin Laden. Fisk interviewed Laden as many as three times during the 1990s, according to theGuardian.

Fisk also penned books on Northern Ireland and the Middle East, including ‘Pity the Nation: Lebanon at War and The Great War for Civilisation.’

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