Today is the 242nd day of 2023. There are 123 days left in the year.
2015: The Jamaican quartet of Novlene Williams-Mills, Stephenie-Ann McPherson, Christine Day, and Shericka Jackson win gold in the women's 4x400m relay at the World Championships in Beijing, China.
30 BC: Cleopatra of Egypt commits suicide by allowing an an asp to bite her.
1928: The independence of India League is formed in India.
1945: Britain re-establishes its governance of Hong Kong, ending three years and seven months of Japanese occupation.
1963: The "Hot Line" communications link between Washington and Moscow goes into operation.
1967: Thurgood Marshall becomes the first black American appointed to the US Supreme Court.
1979: Hurricane David devastates island nation of Dominica as it rampages through the Caribbean and US eastern seaboard, claiming 1,000 lives.
1983: Guion S Bluford Jr becomes the first black American astronaut to travel in space, blasting off aboard the Challenger.
1986: Soviet authorities arrest Nicholas Daniloff — a correspondent for US News and World Report — as a spy a week after American officials arrested Gennadiy Zakharov, a Soviet employee of the United Nations, on espionage charges in New York; both men are later released.
1991: Azerbaijan declares its independence, joining the stampede of republics seeking to secede from the Soviet Union.
1997: Britain's Princess Diana, her boyfriend Emad Mohammed al-Fayed (heir to Harrods and also known as Dodi) and driver Henri Paul die in a car crash in Paris after being chased by photographers.
2001: More than 430 refugees rescued from a sinking ferry, most of them Afghans, languish on a Norwegian cargo ship as Australia refuses them entry.
2006: Israel rejects demands from visiting UN Secretary General Kofi Annan that it immediately lift its sea and air blockade of Lebanon and withdraw its forces once 5,000 international troops are deployed.
2007: In a serious breach of nuclear security a B-52 bomber armed with six nuclear warheads flies cross-country in the USA unnoticed; the air force later punishes 70 people.
2008: Gustav howls into Cuba's Isla de Juventud as a monstrous Category 4 hurricane while both Cubans and Americans scramble to flee the path of the storm which already killed 81 people.
2009: Japan's Opposition sweeps to a historic victory in elections, assuming the daunting task of pulling the economy out of its worst slump since World War II.
2010: An enormous drill begins preliminary work on carving a half-mile (nearly a kilometre) chimney through solid rock to free the 33 men trapped in a Chilean mine, their ordeal now having equalled the longest-known survival of an underground disaster.
2013: Indonesia's highest court upholds a death sentence for Lindsay Sandiford, a British woman convicted of smuggling US$2.5 million worth of cocaine into the resort island of Bali. Seamus Heaney, 74, who won the Nobel Prize for literature and gained a global reputation as Ireland's greatest poet since William Butler Yates, dies in Dublin.
2015: Rap artiste Kanye West announces at the MTV Video Music Awards that he will run for president in 2020.
2017: A federal judge in Texas temporarily blocks most of a new state law that would have allowed police officers to ask people during routine stops whether they were in the country legally; the law also threatened sheriffs with jail time for not cooperating with federal immigration authorities. A Brazilian court blocks President Michel Temer from abolishing Renca, which would open parts of the Amazon to mining.
2019: The outlook for the Great Barrier Reef is downgraded to "very poor" according to an official Australian report.
2021: Algeria becomes the last country to stop selling leaded petrol, ending 99 years of gasoline use worldwide and saving 1.2 million lives a year. America ends its longest-ever war of 20 years in Afghanistan as the last military evacuation plane flies out of Kabul. China restricts online gaming for under 18 seconds to one hour on Fridays, weekends and holidays and orders companies to enforce this.
2022: In Jackson, Mississippi, the city's largest water treatment plant fails, leaving 150,000 people without safe running water and forcing the closure of schools and businesses.
2022: Ukraine begins a counter-attack against Russia in the southern Kherson region.
Peter the Cruel or Peter the Just, Spanish king of Castille and Leon (1334-1369); Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, British author (1797-1851); John Gunther, US journalist-author (1901-1970); Alexander Lukashenko, first president of Belarus (1954- ); Cameron Diaz, US actress (1972- ); Lisa Ling, American journalist, television personality, and author (1973- )
– AP/ Jamaica Observer