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BBC announces slate of election debates

BBC announces slate of election debates
The BBC confirms three debate programmes in the run-up to the general election, including a head-to-head debate between Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer.

The BBC has confirmed its schedule of debate programmes in the run-up to the general election on July 4.

ITV was first off the mark in announcing the now-familiar election debates, with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak due to face off against Labour leader Keir Starmer tomorrow night - and another debate featuring senior figures or leaders from seven parties following on next week.

The BBC will also stage a seven-party debate along the same lines this Friday, June 7, with Mishal Husain hosting from London between 7.30pm and 9pm.

A special primetime edition of Question Time will air at 8pm on Thursday, June 20 and feature the leaders from the Conservative Party, the Labour Party, the Liberal Democrats and the Scottish National Party answering questions from the audience for 30 minutes each. Fiona Bruce will moderate the programme live from York.

The final debate will also mark the final head-to-head debate between Sunak and Starmer before the public go to the polls, with Sophie Raworth hosting live from Nottingham on Wednesday, June 26 between 9pm and 10pm.

Jonathan Munro, the deputy CEO of BBC News, said: "TV debates have become a key part of elections in the UK, giving voters the chance to hear leaders and senior politicians debate policies and ideas directly with each other, which rarely happens on the campaign trail.

"The BBC brings people together. Providing a shared space for people to debate and discuss is a vital part of our mission, so I'm delighted we're holding this series of debates and election specials, hosted by such talented presenters."

Meanwhile, BBC Scotland has set a debate with the leaders of the SNP, Scottish Conservatives, Scottish Labour, Scottish Liberal Democrats and Scottish Greens for Tuesday, June 11 at 8pm on BBC One Scotland, while BBC One Wales has a debate set for Friday, June 21 at 7pm and BBC One Northern Ireland will stage a debate on Thursday, June 27.

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Rishi Sunak pictured on July 18, 2022
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