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Peter Sutherland, lawyer, businessman and statesman – obituary 

Peter Sutherland Credit: Giuseppe Aresu/AP

Peter Sutherland, who has died aged 71, was a combative Irish lawyer and former Attorney General of Ireland who became a European Commissioner and the first director-general of the World Trade Organisation, before making a successful business career as chairman of BP and Goldman Sachs International.

Sutherland was probably best known in Britain for his role in the sometimes turbulent affairs of BP, but his own assessment of his achievements placed his wide-ranging work in the international public arena well ahead of his boardroom battle honours.

In both spheres he was known for a formidable combination of tenacity and charm – and a hint of menace, delivered with a twinkling eye. In later years he was a furious critic both of the British decision to leave the EU and of the way in which British ministers were approaching the negotiation.

In the chair at BP from 1997, Sutherland worked in tandem...

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