Seven world leaders who went to UK universities

Oxford University

The UK is home to some of the world’s top universities. Here are seven world leaders educated in Britain.

1. Malcolm Turnbull

The 29th prime minister of Australia, and leader of the country’s Liberal party, completed a Bachelor of Arts degree at Oxford University, following a degree at the University of Sydney. He took over as prime minister from Tony Abbott in 2015, and led his party into the 2016 election. The Liberal/National coalition lost seats in the House of Representatives, but managed to win a slim majority while the opposition Labour party made gains.

2. Hader al-Abadi

Al-Abadi has been prime minister of Iraq since late 2014. He completed his undergraduate degree in Baghdad, but went on to do a PhD at the University of Manchester in electrical engineering, according to the Manchester Evening News.

3. Michael D. Higgins

Higgins is Ireland’s ninth president, a role which is mostly symbolic and has very few actual political powers. Higgins was elected president in 2011, and attended Manchester University half a century ago.

4. Lee Hsien Loong

Loong has been prime minister of the micro-state of Singapore since 2004. He studied maths at the University of Cambridge before going on to do a Masters degree at Harvard.

5. Theresa May

Like her successor David Cameron, Theresa May completed a degree at the University of Oxford. After attending a grammar school, the current prime minister (at time of publication) went on to study geography at the institution known for its steady production of British prime ministers.

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6. King Phillipe of Belgium

It’s not just elected leaders who have studied at British universities. Belgium’s king, who ascended to the throne in 2013 following Albert II’s abdication also attended Oxford. After time in the Belgium Royal Military Academy, Phillipe went to Oxford University before graduating from Stanford with a degree in politics.

7. King Harald V of Norway

Harald has been Norway’s king since 1991, taking over after the death of Olav V. After living in exile during World War Two, Harald went on to study at Oxford University, specifically Balliol College, from which Edward Heath, Harold MacMillan and Herbert Asquith all graduated from.