David Owen

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Person.png David Owen   History Commons Powerbase Sourcewatch
David Owen.jpg
Dr David Owen, former UK Foreign Secretary
Born 1938-07-02
Plympton, Devon, England
Alma mater Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge
Children 3
Spouse Deborah Schabert
Party Independent

Employment.png Leader of the Social Democratic Party

In office
21 June 1983 - 6 August 1987
Preceded by Roy Jenkins

Employment.png Shadow Secretary of State for Energy Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
14 July 1979 - 4 November 1980
Succeeded by Merlyn Rees

Employment.png Shadow Foreign Secretary Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
4 May 1979 - 14 July 1979
Preceded by Francis Pym
Succeeded by Peter Shore

Employment.png Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
21 February 1977 - 4 May 1979
Preceded by David Owen
Succeeded by Peter Carrington

Employment.png Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Wikipedia-icon.png

In office
10 September 1976 - 21 February 1977
Preceded by Roy Hattersley
Succeeded by David Owen

Employment.png Minister of State for Health and Social Security

In office
26 July 1974 - 10 September 1976

Employment.png Member of Parliament for Plymouth Devonport

In office
28 February 1974 - 9 April 1992

Employment.png Member of Parliament for Plymouth Sutton

In office
31 March 1966 - 28 February 1974
Succeeded by Alan Clark

David Anthony Llewellyn Owen, Baron Owen, CH PC FRCP MB BChir (born 2 July 1938) is a British politician.


Owen was UK Foreign Secretary from 1977 to 1979, the youngest person in over forty years to hold the post. In 1981, Owen was one of the "Gang of Four" who left the Labour Party to found the Social Democratic Party (SDP). Owen led the SDP from 1983 to 1987, and the continuing SDP from 1988 to 1990. He sat in the House of Lords as a crossbencher until March 2014, and now sits as an "independent social democrat".[1]


Patrick Haseldine's letter was published 14 days before the Lockerbie Bombing

In the Observer of Sunday 11 December 1988, Richard Ingrams wrote:

I switched on the Today Programme last week to hear a nicely spoken man being cross-examined about the silly plan to make local government candidates in Ulster sign a renunciation of violence before they can stand for office. The man, whom I assumed to be a junior Government Minister of some kind, defended the measure as best he could, saying that he was sure it would be a useful weapon in the battle against "terrorism" and one which was bound to reduce violence.
"Thank you Mr Ashdown," the interviewer concluded after a minute or two. It turned out, to my great surprise, that the speaker was the newly-elected leader of the Democrats and the man who has pledged himself to replace Mr Neil Kinnock as the Leader of the Opposition. Paddy Ashdown appears not to have grasped the point that the job of an Opposition leader is to oppose. In this respect, there is nothing to choose between him and his rival Dr David Owen.
Owen is a natural Tory, as he showed again last week over the case of Mr Patrick Haseldine, the Foreign Office official, who in a letter to The Guardian last week made a splendid kamikaze attack on Mrs Thatcher for indulging in 'self-righteous invective' over the Patrick Ryan case.
Instead of taking up Mr Haseldine's point and using it as a stick to beat the Government with, as any good Opposition leader would have done, Dr Goody-Two-Shoes called for Haseldine's immediate dismissal.[2]


Events Participated in

Bilderberg/197311 May 1973 - 13 May 1973Saltsjobaden
Bilderberg/198214 May 1982 - 16 May 1982Sandefjord
Rica Park Hotel
Bilderberg/199322 April 1993 - 25 April 1993Nafsika Astir Palace Hotel

Related Document

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
The Rossing File:The Inside Story of Britain's Secret Contract for Namibian Uraniumpamphlet1980Alun RobertsScandal in the 1970s and 1980s of collusion by successive British governments with the mining conglomerate Rio Tinto to import yellowcake from the Rössing Uranium Mine in Namibia (illegally occupied by apartheid South Africa) in defiance of international law, and leading to the targeting of UN Commissioner for Namibia Bernt Carlsson on Pan Am Flight 103 in December 1988.


  1. Eaton, George (2 March 2014). "David Owen joins Miliband's big tent with donation to Labour of more than £7,500". New Statesman. Retrieved 2 March 2014. 
  2. "Splendid kamikaze attack on Mrs Thatcher"
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