Today in History
1632 - King Gustavus II of Sweden is killed in the Battle of Luetzen.
1824 - Australian explorer Hamilton Hume discovers the Murray River, the longest in Australia.
1848 - A liberal insurrection breaks out in Rome, eventually forcing the pope to flee.
1918 - Hungary declares independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire and is proclaimed a republic.
1920 - The Russian Civil War ends with victory for the Bolsheviks.
1941 - Nazi Germany launches second failed assault on Moscow in World War II.
1959 - The Rogers and Hammerstein musical ‘The Sound of Music’ opens on Broadway in New York.
1967 - Twenty-three Turkish Cypriots die fighting on the island of Cyprus.
1973 - Skylab 3, carrying a crew of three astronauts, is launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on an 84-day mission.
1980 - Thailand ammunition plant explosions kill 38.
1988 - Estonian Parliament declares the tiny Baltic republic sovereign with right to veto Soviet laws.
1990 - Hungary announces it will scrap its Soviet-made ground-to-ground missiles.
1992 - Adding to sanctions, the United Nations orders a naval blockade of Yugoslavia.
1993 - A month-long siege of a mosque in Kashmir by Indian troops is ended peacefully.
1994 - Ukrainian parliament approves Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
1995 - More than 10 million Algerians vote under massive security in their first contested presidential election.
1996 - A building housing Russian military personnel and their families near Chechnya collapses after an explosion, killing 13 people.
1997 - The Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Hospital at Jurf in Ajman is officially opened.
2000 - Bill Clinton becomes the first US. President to visit Vietnam since the end
of the Vietnam War.
2002 - Pervez Musharraf becomes president of Pakistan.
2004 - Australia’s fastest train crashes near Bundaberg in Southeast Queensland, no causality reported.
2007 - North and South Korea agree to launch cross-border rail service for the first time in more than half a century.
2009 - Kumi Naidoo becomes the first African to head Greenpeace.
2011 - A spacecraft carrying two Russians and an American docks safely with the International Space Station after a spate of technical failures.
2012 - Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda dissolves the lower house of parliament, setting the stage for a general election next month.
2013 - Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar retires after his 200th and last Test match at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Qatari gifts Boeing 747 to Iraq
Iraq has increased its small domestic airline fleet by one more plane, thanks to the gift of a Boeing 747 from the president of Air Gulf Falcon. Shaikh Hamad Bin Ali Al Thani presented the white plane with blue stripes in a ceremony at Saddam International Airport. Transportation and Communications Minister Ahmad Murtada Ahmad Khalil announced at the ceremony that Iraq will soon fly its planes abroad following the recent resumption of domestic flights. Earlier this month, Iraq flew two domestic flights in defiance of no-fly zones enforced by United States and British warplanes. Iraq used old Russian-made military cargo planes for the flights as its fleet of 15 Boeing airliners was flown out to Jordan, Iran and Tunisia to escape bombing during the 1991 Gulf War and it has not been able to retrieve them. The resumption of domestic flights follows the arrival in Baghdad of dozens of international flights from non-governmental organisations and foreign countries seeking an end to United Nations sanctions imposed to punish Iraq for invading Kuwait in 1990.