The veteran British foreign correspondent Robert Fisk has died at the age of 74.
The journalist and author was reportedly admitted to St Vincent’s hospital in Dublin after becoming unwell on Friday. A source at the Independent, where Fisk was Middle East correspondent, confirmed the news of his death.
Fisk was admitted to hospital after suffering a suspected stroke, according to a report in the Irish Times.
Described by the New York Times in 2005 as “probably the most famous foreign correspondent in Britain”, Fisk was also one of the country’s most divisive.
He won many prestigious awards over the span of his career for his coverage of the Middle East including the Orwell Prize for Journalism and multiple wins at the British Press Awards in the categories of international reporter of the year and foreign reporter of the year.
After beginning his career at the Sunday Express, Fisk moved to the Times where from 1972 to 1975 he was the paper’s Belfast correspondent at the height of the Northern Ireland troubles.
In 1976 he moved to Beirut where he began his career as a Middle East correspondent, covering the Lebanese civil war, the Iranian revolution, the Iran-Iraq War and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
He joined the Independent in 1989, and remained their correspondent in the region until his death, covering events such as Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait and the recent wars in Syria. He also covered the Bosnian and Kosovo wars in the former Yugoslavia.
A fluent Arabic speaker, he was among the few Western journalists to interview the al-Qaida leader, Osama bin Laden, which he did three times during the 1990s.
Fisk was a controversial figure, known for his criticism of the United States. Following the 11 September 2001 attacks, he faced a backlash after asking what had motivated those who were responsible for the attacks.