1964: The first report linking smoking to health risks is issued by US Surgeon General Luther Terry.
1919: Romania annexes Transylvania.
1939: Abu Dhabi Ruler Sheik Shakhbout signs the emirate's first oil agreement, with a British-led consortium.
1942: Japan declares war against the Netherlands, the same day that Japanese forces invade the Dutch East Indies.
1943: Britain and the US relinquish extraterritorial rights in China.
1972: The new state of Bangladesh is recognised by East Germany.
1976: President Rodriguez Lara of Ecuador is ousted in a coup.
1986: L Douglas Wilder becomes Lt Governor of Virginia, making him the first African-American sworn in as a Southern state official since the American Civil War.
1990: About 250,000 people demonstrate in favour of independence in the Lithuanian capital as Mikhail Gorbachev arrives there to persuade the local Communist Party to retract its decision to break with the national party.
1993: The UN Security Council meets to warn Iraqi President Saddam Hussein that he is violating Gulf War ceasefire terms by his unauthorised seizure of weapons in Kuwaiti territory.
1997: Burundian soldiers shoot and kill 126 Hutu refugees trying to break out of a holding camp in northeastern Burundi.
1999: Haiti's President Rene Preval dissolves Parliament after a 22-month impasse with no working government. He appoints a premier and a Cabinet by decree.
2001: General Augusto Pinochet, the former Chilean dictator, enters the Santiago military hospital to undergo neurological and mental tests ordered by a judge seeking to try him on human rights charges.
2002: The first 20 Taliban and al-Qaeda detainees from the US campaign in Afghanistan arrive at the US naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba for possible questioning and trial.
2003: The Indian government and the Naga faction, one of the longest-running separatist insurgent groups in Asia, agree that a five-year ceasefire will become permanent and there will be no more fighting.
2004: Hardliners throw Iran's legislative elections into crisis by disqualifying hundreds of liberal candidates, including more than 80 sitting lawmakers who are allied with the reformist President Mohammad Khatami.
2007: Bangladesh's President Iajuddin Ahmed declares a state of emergency, steps down as interim leader of Bangladesh's caretaker government and postpones the January 22 elections following violent protests by a key political alliance that said it would boycott the vote.
2009: Lawmakers, Muslim groups and the Pakistani public criticise Prince Harry after a British newspaper publishes video footage of him using offensive and racist language.
2011: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange vows to step up his site's release of secret documents while he fights extradition to Sweden, as his lawyers argue that sending him to Stockholm could land him in Guantanamo Bay or even on US death row.
Francesco Parmigianino, Italian artist (1504-1540); William James, US philosopher (1842-1910); Rod Taylor, Australian actor (1930-); Jean Chretien, former Canadian prime minister (1934-); Clarence Clemons, US saxophonist w/rock group Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band (1942-
2011); Kim Coles, US actress (1962-); Mary J Blige, US singer (1971-).