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British journalist Clare Hollingworth who broke news of World War II dies aged 105

11/01/2017
British journalist Clare Hollingworth who broke news of World War II dies aged 105 10 October 1911 - 10 January 2017

British war correspondent Clare Hollingworth, who was the first to announce Germany's invasion of Poland, died Tuesday 10 January 2017 in Hong Kong at the age of 105.

Born on 10 October 1911 in Knighton, Leicester, Clare Hollingworth has worked on a number of war scenes of the 20th century, from Vietnam to Algeria through the Far East, India, Pakistan and China. But she is particularly remembered for "the scoop of the century" at the dawn of the Second World War #WW2 in 1939, when she was only a debutante.

At 27, Clare Hollingworth had been working for a week in Poland for the Daily Telegraph when she was the first to announce the German invasion.

Using the car of a British diplomat to cross the German-Polish border, the reporter spotted hundreds of German tanks and armored cars ready to invade Poland. Three days later, on 1 September, awakened by the Nazi rush over Katowice, a Polish town near the border, Clare Hollingworth called the British Embassy in Warsaw to announce the start of the war. As her interlocutors did not take her seriously, Clare Hollingworth held the handset out of her window to make them hear the din of the Nazi tanks entering the city. "If there is a war and if the world wants it, I would like to cover it," she told AFP in 2009.

Clare Hollingworth was also the author of the scoop on the defection of the British double agent Kim Philby in the Soviet Union in 1963. In 1946, she escaped with her husband to the explosion of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, which killed 91 people.

Made Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), Clare Hollingworth won many awards as Woman Journalist of the Year, Hannen Swaffer Awards, UK, James Cameron Award for Journalism and a lifetime achievement award from the UK television programme What the Papers Say. Clare Hollingworth married twice and had no children. She settled permanently in 1981 in Honk Kong after working in Beijing.

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