This day in history | 1999 Olympic officials face bribery charges

Six members of the International Olympic Committee face expulsion following an inquiry into a corruption scandal which has deeply shaken the Olympic movement. The six were identified at the end of

This day in history | 1990 Gorbachev explains crackdown in Azerbaijan

President Mikhail Gorbachev has made a statement on Soviet television explaining the Soviet crackdown on civil unrest in the republic of Azerbaijan. Two days ago Soviet troops were ordered into the

This day in history | 1950 Acclaimed author George Orwell dies

The writer, George Orwell, has died after a three-year battle against tuberculosis. Until the last, news had been positive and it was hoped Mr Orwell was improving. On Friday morning he had

This day in history | 1961 John F Kennedy sworn in as US president

The Democrat John F Kennedy has been sworn in as the youngest ever elected president of the United States. The 43-year-old Roman Catholic was inaugurated as the 35th president on a

This day in history | 1966 Indira Gandhi takes charge in India

Indira Gandhi, only daughter of India’s first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru, is to become the country’s next leader. She was chosen at the end of a bitter leadership battle with former

This day in history | 1991 Iraqi Scud missiles hit Israel

Iraq has attacked two Israeli cities with Scud missiles, prompting fears that Israel may be drawn into the Gulf War. Israel’s largest city, Tel Aviv, and Haifa, its main seaport, were

This day in history | 1999 Putin takes over as Yeltsin resigns

Mr Yeltsin made the shock announcement live on Russian television and said Prime Minister Vladimir Putin will take over as acting president, with elections now due to take place on

This day in history | 1994 Duchess of Kent joins Catholic church

The Duchess of Kent has become the first member of the Royal Family to convert to Catholicism for more than 300 years. The duchess was received into the Catholic church in

This Day in History | 1993 Allies bomb Iraq

American, British and French fighter jets have carried out a series of bombing raids over southern Iraq. The Iraqis have repeatedly breached the “no-fly zone” set up after the Gulf War

This day in history | 1976 Crime writer Agatha Christie dies

The most popular novelist in the world, Dame Agatha Christie, has died leaving rumours of a multi-million pound fortune and a final book waiting to be published. The British author, who

This day in history | 1973 First Open University degrees awarded

The first graduates from the Open University (OU) have been awarded their degrees after two years studying from home. Out of the 1,000 students who sat the final exams, 867 were

This day in history | 1976 Iceland and Britain clash at sea

A British naval frigate has been involved in another collision with an Icelandic gunboat in the Atlantic. HMS Andromeda was dented when the gunboat, Thor, sailed close to the bow. Thor

This day in history | 2000 Flu outbreak stretches NHS resources

Hospitals around the UK are feeling the strain of the current flu outbreak even though it has not been classed as an epidemic. In Scotland latest figures show that the number

This day in history | 1985 Israel ends major Ethiopian rescue mission

Israel has airlifted thousands of Jewish Ethiopian refugees out of Sudan, it has emerged. Operation Moses, which has been taking place in secret since 21 November 1984, has been suspended since

This day in history | 1967 Campbell killed during record attempt

Donald Campbell has been killed a split second before breaking his own water speed record in his jet-powered boat, the Bluebird K7. He was travelling at more than 300mph (483 km/h)

This day in history | 1999 UK prepares to celebrate millennium

Britain is gearing up to join a global party in a spectacular array of revelries to welcome in the third millennium. The scale of the celebrations ranges from large organised events,

This day in history | 1958 Castro’s rebels edge closer to capital

A vicious house-to-house battle between rebel guerrillas, led by Fidel Castro, and the Cuban army is raging around the town of Santa Clara, the capital of the province of Las

This day in history | 1975 New laws to end battle of the sexes

Radical new legislation introducing a woman’s right to equal pay and status in the workplace and in society have come into force in the UK. The Sex Discrimination and Equal Pay

This day in history | 1980 Green light for breakfast television

A shake-up of broadcasting franchises has paved the way for the launch of breakfast television. The Independent Broadcasting Authority announced the breakfast contract will go to TV-am and will launch in

This Day in History | 1944 Germany counter-attacks in Ardennes

The Germans have mounted a series of counter-attacks on the Western front allowing them to re-cross the borders of Luxembourg and Belgium. On the second day of what now appears to

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