PLO leader Yasser Arafat with UN Secretary-General Perez de Cuellar in Geneva. Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

1988: Palestine Liberation Organisation chairman Yasser Arafat asked for United Nations protection for Palestinians living in the Occupied Territories. The PLO leader made the request during a 90-minute meeting with UN Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar at the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva, a UN spokesman said. The Secretary-General had promised Arafat that he would do everything in the power of the United Nations to help. More than 240 Palestinians have died in clashes with Israeli security forces since unrest erupted in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip in December 1987. Arafat’s delegation, which included Farouk Kaddoumi, Foreign policy chief, avoided reporters before and after the talks. The official said Arafat would explore ways of involving the world body directly in the territories, including a possible trusteeship.

Other important events

1859 Edwin Drake strikes oil at 69 feet near Titusville, Pennsylvania, the world’s first successful oil well.

1892 New York City Metropolitan Opera House catches fire.

1910 The first radio broadcast is transmitted from a plane in flight.

1939 The world’s first turbojet-powered aircraft, Germany’s Henkel He 178, makes its first flight.

1941 Shah of Iran abdicates and is succeeded by his son, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

1979 Lord Mountbatten dies in a boat explosion.

1982 Turkish military diplomat Colonel Atilla Altikat is shot and killed in Ottawa.

1985 The Nigerian army topples the 20-month-old government of General Mohammad Buhari in an apparently bloodless coup.

1993 A dam burst in the province of Qinghai, western China, killing more than 200 people

1999 The last crew shuts the door on the 13-year-old Mir space station.

2001 Israel kills Palestinian leader Abu Ali Mustafa in a missile strike in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

2006 A commuter jet Comair taking off for Atlanta crashes just past the runway and burst into flames in Kentucky, killing 49 people.

2007 Google launches Google Sky.

2010 New constitution is launched in Kenya.

2013 Pakistani Malala Yousufzai wins the Children’s Peace Prize for her passionate advocacy of girls’ education.

2017 Kuwait and UK sign a new military cooperation agreement.