This Day in History — May 5
A man displays a picture of Irish Republican Army hunger-striker Bobby Sands, who dies this day at Maze Prison in Northern Ireland on his 66th day without food. (AP)

This is the 125th day of 2022. There are 240 days left in the year.


1862: Mexican army defeats invading French forces in the Battle of Puebla. May 5 is now Mexico’s National Day, Cinco de Mayo.


1891: New York’s Carnegie Hall (then named Music Hall) has its official opening night, featuring Russian composer Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky as a guest conductor.

1892: US Congress passes the Geary Chinese Exclusion Act, which requires Chinese in the United States to be registered or face deportation.

1925: Schoolteacher John T Scopes is charged in Tennessee with violating a state law that prohibited teaching Darwin’s theory of evolution. Scopes is found guilty but his conviction is later set aside.

1989: Estonia’s Communist Party removes 22 party leaders in a sweep that gives greater strength to reformers.

1994: Singapore canes American teenager Michael Fay for vandalism, a day after the sentence was reduced from six lashes to four in response to an appeal by US President Bill Clinton.

2002: Fidel Castro releases from prison one of Cuba’s most prominent dissidents, Vladimiro Roca, who was convicted of sedition for publishing a pamphlet that called for democratic and economic reforms.

2003: Rwanda frees more than 22,000 detainees, most of whom were held in connection with the 1994 massacre of some 800,000 ethnic Tutsi and moderate Hutu by Hutu militias. Around 80,000 genocide suspects remain in prison, with many yet to stand trial.

2004: Greece’s attempts to calm security fears about the Summer Olympics are rocked by three bombs that explode before dawn — 100 days before the Games begin. No one is injured.

2011: Honouring victims of the September 11 terror attacks, US President Barack Obama hugs survivors at “ground zero” in New York and declares killing Osama bin Laden was an American message to the world: “When we say we will never forget, we mean what we say.” Pakistan’s army breaks its silence over the US commando raid that killed Osama bin Laden, acknowledging its own “shortcomings” in efforts to find the al-Qaeda.

2013: Israel rushes to beef up its rocket defences on its northern border to shield against possible retaliation after carrying out two airstrikes in Syria over 48 hours — an unprecedented escalation of Israeli involvement in the Syrian civil war.

2014: Egypt’s former military chief Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, seen as certain to become the next president, says the Muslim Brotherhood will never return if he is elected, accusing it of using militant groups to destabilise the country.

2015: Secretary of State John Kerry makes an unannounced trip to Somalia in a show of solidarity with a Government trying to defeat al-Qaeda-allied militants and end decades of war in the African country; Kerry is the first top US diplomat ever to visit Somalia.

Today’s Birthdays:

Soeren Kierkegaard, Danish philosopher-theologian (1813-1855); Karl Marx, German socialist (1818-1883); France’s Empress Eugenie (1826-1920); Nellie Bly, US journalist/adventurer (1867-1922); actress Pat Carroll (1927-); Neville Willoughby, legendary Jamaican broadcaster (1937-2006 ); John Rhys-Davies, actor (1944-); Kurt Loder, entertainment critic (1945- ); Tammy Wynette, US singer (1942-1998); Brian Williams, NBC newsman (1959- ); Tina Yothers, actress (1973- ); Danielle Fishel, actress (1981- ); Adele, British soul singer (1988- ); Chris Brown, R&B singer (1989- ).

–AP and Jamaica Observer

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