Today is the 266th day of 2012.There are 100 days left in the year.
1989: F W De Klerk takes over as president of South Africa.
1711: Rio de Janeiro is captured by the French.
1862: US President Abraham Lincoln issues the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring all slaves in the Confederate States free as of January 1, 1863.
1927: Slavery is abolished in Sierra Leone in Africa.
1955: Hurricane Janet, the most violent Caribbean hurricane of the season, causes almost 600 deaths around the islands.
1965: A cease-fire is declared in the war between India and Pakistan, but both sides subsequently violate it.
1974: Official death toll in hurricane that swept Honduras is put at 5,000.
1980: Iraqi tanks enter Iran, marking the beginning of the Iran-Iraq War as a full-scale conflict.
1988: The government of Canada apologises for the World War II internment of Japanese-Canadians and promises compensation.
1993: Abkhazian rebels in Georgia shoot down second passenger plane in two days, killing 80.
1995: America's Time Warner Inc. and Turner Broadcasting System Inc. announce a merger with Time Warner purchasing TBS in a deal valued at $7.5 billion, creating the world's largest media company.
1998: Troops from South Africa and Botswana cross into Lesotho and storm the royal palace, touching off a gunbattle with protesters.
2004: The US military drops an espionage charge against a Muslim interpreter accused of spying at the camp for terror detainees at the US military base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. It is the third Guantanamo spy case of the year to fall apart.
2007: Monks lead swelling demonstrations against Myanmar's military regime march past barricades to the home of Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, increasing pressure on the junta.
2008: The first excavation of Stonehenge in more than 40 years has uncovered evidence that the stone circle drew ailing pilgrims from around Europe for what they believed to be its healing properties, archaeologists say.
2011: American diplomats lead a walkout at the UN General Assembly as Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad fiercely attacks the US and major West European nations as "arrogant powers" ruled by greed and eager for military adventurism.
Michael Faraday, British physicist (1791-1862); Erich von Stroheim, German director and actor (1885-1957); Louis Botha, South African soldier-statesman (1862-1919); John Houseman, US stage/radio actor (1902-1988); Fay Weldon, British writer (1931-); Andrea Bocelli, Italian opera singer (1958-); Joan Jett, US rock singer (1960-).