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This Day in History - August 8

Wednesday, August 08, 2012    

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Today is the 221st day of 2011.There are 145 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight

1962: Celebrations for Jamaica's first Independence Day continue with a 7:00 pm roadside concert at the corner of Olympic Way and Cling Cling Avenue in St Andrew. It features, among others, Lousie Bennett, Ranny Williams, Charles Hyatt, The Frats Qunitet, Ivy Baxter and Eddie Thomas, and Mapletoft Poulle and his Orchestra.

Earlier in the day, Princess Margaret and the Earl of Snowdon travel by royal train from Spanish Town, St Catherine to Montego Bay, St James. They stop in Denbigh, Clarendon; Williamsfield Manchester; Maggotty, St Elizabeth; and Montpelier, Westmoreland for infomal welcomes.

Other Events

1588: The English fleet batters and scatters the Spanish Armada off France, in the first major naval gun battle in history.

1815: France's Napoleon Bonaparte sails for St Helena to spend remainder of his life in exile.

1876: American inventor Thomas A Edison receives a patent for his mimeograph.

1945: US President Harry S Truman signs the UN Charter.

1963: Britain's "Great Train Robbery" takes place as thieves make off with 2.6 million pounds in bank notes.

1980: A Turkish military court sentences 22 people to death on charges from the December 1978 rioting in Kahramanmaras that killed more than 100 people. The court acquits 411 others.

1983: In its sixth coup since 1954, the Guatemalan military overthrows President Efrain Rios Montt and installs defence minister, Oscar Humberto Mejia Victores, as chief of state.

1988: UN Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar announces a cease-fire between Iran and Iraq.

1990: Iraq formally annexes Kuwait and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher orders British air and naval forces to the Gulf at the request of Saudi Arabia's King Fahd.

1992: President Denis Sassou-Nguesso loses his seat in Republic of Congo's first presidential election since 1963.

1994: Israel and Jordan open the first road linking the two nations.

1995: The "AIDS gang" a group of bank robbers who cannot be jailed under Italian law because they have AIDS, are freed again after their fourth holdup in three weeks.

1996: Chechen rebels push back Russian armoured columns trying to reinforce besieged government buildings in Grozny; Boris Yeltsin begins his second term as Russian president.

1997: A nationwide strike in Kenya is called by constitutional reform advocates. Mobs kill two policemen; shops are looted in the capital.

2001: Mohammad Khatami is sworn in for a second term as Iran's president.

2005: President Robert Mugabe rejects calls for talks with Zimbabwe's opposition leader on resolving the country's political and economic crisis.

2007: Jakarta holds local elections for the first time, the latest in a wave of votes hailed as key to strengthening democracy in Indonesia.

2008: Georgian troops launch a major offensive to regain control over breakaway province South Ossetia. Russia, in retaliation, sends a column of tanks into the region.

Today's Birthdays

Francis Hutcheson, Scottish philosopher (1694-1746); Emiliano Zapata, Mexican revolutionary (1879-1919); P A M Dirac, British physicist and Nobel laureate (1902-1984); Dino DeLaurentiis, Italian film producer (1919-2010); Esther Williams, US swimmer-actress (1921-); Dustin Hoffman, US actor (1937-); Peter Weir, Australian film director (1944-).

— Jamaica Observer and AP

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