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Tragic passing Taoiseach leads tributes after the death of renowned war reporter Robert Fisk


Robert Fisk

Robert Fisk

Robert Fisk

The Taoiseach has led tributes in Ireland after the death of one of the world’s most renowned journalists, Robert Fisk.

Mr Fisk, 74, a celebrated journalist and author, died in St Vincent’s Hospital, Dublin, after a suspected stroke.

Micheál Martin tweeted: “Saddened tonight to hear of the death of journalist Robert Fisk.

“He was fearless and independent in his reporting, with a deeply researched understanding of the complexities of the Middle East, eastern history and politics.

“He helped many people understand those complexities better. RIP.”

The journalist, who had reported extensively on conflict, covering the Troubles in Belfast, the Lebanese civil war, the Russian invasion of Afghanistan, the Iranian revolution and the Iran-Iraq War.

The former London Times reporter lived in Dalkey, south Dublin. Fisk had written many books on conflict and journalism and his writings inspired a generation of news reporters.

President Higgins said: “I have learned with great sadness of the death of Robert Fisk.

“Wit his passing the world of journalism and informed commentary on the Middle East has lost one of its finest commentators.

“I have had the privilege of knowing Robert Fisk since the 1990s and of meeting him in some of the countries of which he wrote, with such great understanding.

“I met him in Iraq and last year I had my last meeting with him in Beirut, during my official visit to Lebanon.

“I knew that his taking of Irish citizenship meant a great deal to him and his influence on young practitioners in journalism and political writing was attested by the huge audiences which attended the occasions on which he spoke in Ireland.

“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.

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“To his family and many friends Sabina and I send our deepest condolences.”

Labour Party senator Marie Sherlock wrote online: “I think there are many who owe their consciousness of the Middle East to Robert Fisk.

“Pity the Nation and the Great War of Civilisation left indelible marks on me. His passing leaves a huge void. Rest in peace.”

Political editor of the Belfast Telegraph, Susan Breen tweeted: “Robert Fisk was a giant in journalism. Whilst others were spoon-fed lies, he challenged the narrative of the powerful.

“Fearless and unflinching, he was ‘controversial’ for all the right reasons. His death leaves a huge void in foreign reportage.”

And British comedian Dom Joly also paid tribute, writing: “OMG Robert Fisk dead - greatest Middle Eastern journalist of my lifetime. Lebanon has lost a great ally. Pity The Nation was the definitive book on Lebanon.”

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