This Day in History — July 1


This Day in History — July 1

Wednesday, July 01, 2020

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Today is the 183rd day of 2020. There are 183 days left in the year.


2004: Saddam Hussein appears in Iraqi court for the first time, scoffing at charges of war crimes and genocide.


1847: The US Post Office issues the first adhesive-backed stamps.

1867: The provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, and Ontario officially become the Dominion of Canada.

1910: South Africa becomes a dominion of British Empire, after the British defeat the Dutch settlers in the Boer War (1899-1902).

1916: The British army attacks German lines at the start the First Battle of the Somme during World War I, sustaining their heaviest casualties ever in one day: 20,000 dead.

1921: Revolutionaries Mao Zedong and Chen Duxiu, who turned to Marxism after the 1917 Bolshevik revolution victory in Russia, secretly meet and establish the Communist Party of China.

1961: Algerians vote overwhelmingly for independence from France.

1962: Rwanda and Burundi gain independence from Belgium.

1967: China's Communist Party proclaims the overthrow of President Liu Shaoqi.

1968: Britain, Soviet Union, United States and 58 non-nuclear nations sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

1969: Denmark becomes the first country in the world to allow the sale and production of pornography after adult censorship is lifted.

1974: Australia's road signs switch from imperial to metric; President Juan Peron of Argentina dies during his third term in office.

1983: Australia's High Court rules against building the controversial Gordon-below-Franklin dam in Tasmania.

1990: Economies and social welfare systems of East and West Germany are officially merged.

1991: After the democratic revolutions of 1989 in eastern Europe, the Warsaw Pact is declared “non-existent” at a final meeting in Czechoslovakia.

1994: Palestine Liberation Organisation leader Yasser Arafat drives from Egypt into Gaza, ending his 27-year exile and returning with all the trappings of a head of State.

1996: The world's first voluntary euthanasia law takes effect in the Northern Territory.

1997: After 156 years as a British colony, Hong Kong awakens to its first day as part of China. Prince Charles and former Governor Chris Patten leave aboard the royal yacht Britannia.

1999: Queen Elizabeth II opens Scotland's first parliament in nearly 300 years.

2001: Twenty-seven slashed bodies are found in Aceh, Indonesia, where more than 870 people have been killed in a separatist war by the Free Aceh Movement or GAM rebels.

2002: A Boeing 757 cargo jet crashes mid-air into a Russian passenger airliner over southern Germany, killing 71.

2008: France's army chief resigns following a weekend military show in which 16 people were wounded when real bullets were used instead of blanks.

2009: Iran's embattled Opposition Leader Mir Hossein Mousavi tells supporters “it's not yet too late” to push for their rights, and he joins a reformist ex-president in condemning the regime for a post-election crackdown both said was tantamount to a coup.

2010: Surgeon Jayant Patel, 60, is sentenced to seven years' imprisonment for the manslaughter of three patients and causing grievous bodily harm to a fourth, while director of surgery at Bundaberg Base Hospital between 2003 and 2005.

2011: The Australian Greens gain the balance of power for the first time in the Senate, with nine sitting members.

2012: A pro-democracy heckler interrupts a speech by China's President Hu Jintao at the swearing-in of Hong Kong's new leader. The carbon tax comes into effect in Australia, with the US$23 per tonne price on emissions directly impacting 294 electricity generators and other companies.

2013: Demonstrations by millions across Egypt call for the resignation of President Mohammed Morsi.

2014: David Greenglass, a spy for the Soviet Union who spent 10 years in prison for his role in the cold war, and who gave testimony that sent his brother-in-law and sister, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, to the electric chair, dies, aged 92.

2015: The United Nations' World Heritage Committee decides against declaring the Great Barrier Reef “in danger”, but it will remain under close watch for four years; US and Cuba agree to open embassies in each other's country, ending 50 years of detente.

2016: British Home Secretary Theresa May emerges as the front-runner to lead the Conservative Party after David Cameron's resignation following the Brexit vote.

2017: Cardinal George Pell hires top criminal barrister Robert Richter, QC, to help defend him on charges of historical sexual assault.


Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, German philosopher and mathematician (1646-1716); George Sand (Armandine Dudevant), French author (1804-1876); Charles Laughton, British-born actor (1899-1965); James Cagney, US actor (1904-1986); Olivia de Havilland, British actress (1916-); Sydney Pollack, American film director (1934-2008); Diana, Princess of Wales (1961-1997); Sir Seretse Khama, first president of Botswana (1921-1980); Twyla Tharp, US dancer/choreographer (1941- ); Deborah Harry, US singer (1945- ); Carl Lewis, US Olympic athlete (1961- ); Nick Giannopoulos, Australian comedian (1963- ); Pamela Anderson, US actress (1967- ); Liv Tyler, American actress (1977- )

— AP

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