US Army Sgt Scott Lewis adjusts his machine gun in the turret of a Humvee before American army withdraw from Fallujah. Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

2003 - For the first time since US forces captured Fallujah three months ago, American soldiers withdrew from the town mayor’s office. US troops also left a police station in this tense western town after Iraqi officers complained the American presence was putting local police at risk. At the symbolically important town office, Mayor Taha Bedewi said he hoped the reduced American troop presence around the facility would help ease attacks on both Iraqi police and US military personnel. There was no sign of US troops anywhere in the troubled city that has been the scene of many attacks on American forces.

Other important events

1859 - Westminster’s Big Ben rings for the first time in London.

1921 - Mongolia gains independence from China.

1936 - The Triborough Bridge opens to traffic in New York City.

1950 - Pakistan joins the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

1979 - Skylab falls to earth after six years in orbit.

1987 - Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke wins a historic third term in general election.

1994 - Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat heads to Gaza, ending his 12-year exile in Tunisia.

1995 - US establishes diplomatic relations with Vietnam.

2003 - Bus services restart between Lahore and New Delhi.

2006 - Eight bombs hit Mumbai’s commuter rail network during rush hour in the financial hub of India, killing at least 200 people.

2007 - Pakistani troops storm Islamabad’s radical Red Mosque. Some 102 people die.

2009 - Former Canadian boxing champion Arturo Gatti is found dead in a Brazilian hotel room.