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This Day in History - June 5

Thursday, June 05, 2014    

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Today is the 156th day of 2014 There are 209 days left in the year.

TODAY'S HIGHLIGHT

1981: The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that five gay men in California are suffering from a rare pneumonia found in patients with weakened immune systems. These are the first recognized cases of what became known as AIDS.

OTHER EVENTS

1783: Joseph and Jacques Montgolfier demonstrate their hot-air balloon.

1794: Congress passes the Neutrality Act, prohibiting Americans from enlisting in the service of a foreign power.

1849: Denmark becomes a constitutional monarchy with a parliament and freedom of press, association and religion.

1884: Civil War hero General William T Sherman refuses the Republican presidential nomination, saying:"I will not accept if nominated and will not serve if elected."

1885: British establish protectorate over Niger River region, now Nigeria.

1915: Danish women win voting rights.

1933: The US goes off the gold standard.

1947: US Secretary of State George C Marshall calls for a massive programme of foreign aid to help the European states recover after World War II. It becomes known as the Marshall Plan.

1967: Israel launches airstrikes on Egypt, destroying most of that country's air force on the ground to open the six-day Middle East War. Syria, Jordan and Iraq enter the conflict

1968: US Senator Robert F Kennedy is shot and mortally wounded just after claiming victory in California's Democratic presidential primary. Gunman Sirhan Bishara Sirhan was immediately arrested.

1975: Suez Canal in Egypt reopens to international shipping for first time since 1967 Arab-Israeli War.

1988: Australian Kay Cottee becomes the first woman to sail alone non-stop around the world.

1995: Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic says he has convinced Bosnian Serbs to release the 235 UN personnel held hostage in Bosnia after airstrikes against the Serbs. The hostages are later gradually released.

1996: In their first exchange, new Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tells Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat that there will "never" be a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital.

1999: NATO and Yugoslav officers meet for the first time in Macedonia to discuss the withdrawal of Serb forces from Kosovo.

2000: Rebels on one side of an ethnic conflict in the Solomon Islands capture the prime minister, put up roadblocks around the capital and overrun key installations, while the rest of the government remains in power.

2002: A Palestinian suicide bomber detonates a car packed with explosives alongside a bus at Megiddo Junction in northern Israel, killing himself and at least 17 Israelis, including 13 soldiers.

2004: Ronald Reagan, who devoted his presidency to winning the Cold War, dies after a long struggle with Alzheimer's disease.

2005: Kurdish rebels ambush a Turkish commando unit overnight, killing four soldiers and wounding one in south-eastern Turkey as the rebel command threatens to escalate violence across the country.

2006: Islamic militants with alleged links to al-Qaeda seize control of Somalia's capital, unifying the city for the first time in 16 years and posing a direct challenge to the UN-backed government.

2007: Pipeline diggers unearth a mass grave believed to contain thousands of Jews slaughtered in Ukraine during World War II.

2008: The United Arab Emirates announces it will name an ambassador to Baghdad, the first Arab country to restore full diplomatic ties to Iraq since the collapse of Saddam Hussein's regime.

2010: Researchers score the first big win against melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. An experimental drug significantly improved survival in a major study of people with very advanced disease.

2012: A US drone strike in north-west Pakistan kills al-Qaeda's second-in-command, the most significant victory so far in the controversial bombing campaign and the biggest setback to the terror network since the death of Osama bin Laden.

TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS

Pancho Villa, Mexican revolutionary (1878-1923); John Maynard Keynes, British economist (1883-1946); Federico Garcia Lorca, Spanish poet (1898-1936); Spalding Gray, actor (1941-2004); Fred Stone (AKA Fred Stewart), US guitarist for Sly and the Family Stone (1946- ); Laurie Anderson, US performance artist (1947- ); Brian McKnight, US singer (1969- ); Mark Wahlberg, US actor (1971- )

--AP

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