HIGHLIGHTS IN HISTORY ON THIS DATE
64 - Great fire of Rome begins.
1536 - The Pope's authority is declared void in England.
1812 - Britain, by Treaty of Orebro, joins Sweden and Russia against France.
1872 - Britain introduces voting by secret ballot.
1912 - Tewfik Pasha becomes Grand Vizier of Persia following the fall of Said Pasha's ministry.
1923 - The British Matrimonial Causes Act gives women equality in divorce suits.
1925 - The Druse, a relatively small Middle Eastern religious sect characterised by an eclectic system of doctrines, begins insurrection against the French in Syria.
1966 - South Africa declares it will maintain control of South-West Africa after the World Court dismisses a lawsuit brought by black-ruled African states.
1969 - A car driven by US Senator Edward M Kennedy plunges off a bridge in Chappaquiddick, Massachusetts, and passenger Mary Jo Kopechne drowns.
1972 - The Egyptian government orders the Soviet Union to withdraw military advisers stationed in Egypt.
1990 - Iraq warns OPEC members it views violations of the group's production quotas as virtual acts of war, and accuses Kuwait of stealing its oil for the past decade.
1993 - Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif resigns and dissolves parliament, leading to general elections.
1994 - Terrorists bomb a Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires, Argentina, killing 95.
1998 - South African President Nelson Mandela celebrates his 80th birthday by marrying Graca Machel, widow of Samora Machel, the first president of Mozambique.
1999 - India says it has ousted the intruders on its Kashmir frontier with Pakistan, ending the worst fighting between the countries since a 1971 war.
2002 - AJP Abdul Kalam, a scientist known as the father of India's nuclear missile program, is elected as the nation's 12th president. Kalam, an ethnic Tamil, is the third Muslim to hold the post.
2004 - An American accused of deserting the US Army and defecting to North Korea is hospitalised immediately after he arrives in Japan, putting himself within the reach of US authorities for the first time in 39 years.
2007 - An underground steam pipe explosion tears through a Manhattan street near Grand Central Terminal, swallowing a tow truck and killing one person as hundreds of others ran for cover amid a towering geyser of steam and flying rubble.
2008 - Two French humanitarian aid workers are kidnapped in Afghanistan's Day Kundi province.
2009 - A top US envoy calls for patience in getting North Korea to abandon its nuclear programs, a day after Washington warned of aggressive sanctions unless the North returns to stalled disarmament talks.
2010 - Pakistan and Afghanistan seal a landmark trade deal as US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton pushes the two neighbours to step up civilian co-operation and work together against al-Qaeda and the Taliban.
2011 - Scotland Yard's assistant commissioner resigns, a day after his boss also quit, and fresh investigations of possible police wrongdoing are launched in the phone-hacking scandal that has spread from Rupert Murdoch's media empire to the British prime minister's office.
2012 - Rebels penetrate the heart of Syria's power elite, detonating a bomb inside a high-level crisis meeting in Damascus that kills three leaders of the regime, including President Bashar Assad's brother-in-law and the defence minister.
2013 - Alexei Navalny, a charismatic and creative Russian opposition leader who exposed high-level corruption and mocked the Kremlin, is sentenced to five years in prison on charges of embezzlement.
2014 - World leaders demand that pro-Russian rebels give independent investigators unfettered access to the Ukraine crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was shot down with 290 people aboard.
2015 - A US Navy officer becomes the fifth person to die in a mass shooting of US military personnel in Tennessee.
2017 - Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announces a new super ministry to manage national security.
2018 - Singer Sir Cliff Richard is awarded more than $A370,000 in damages after winning a privacy case against the BBC.
William Makepeace Thackeray, English novelist (1811-1863); Vidkun Quisling, Norwegian politician and Nazi collaborator (1887-1945); Hume Cronyn, Canadian actor (1911-2003); Nelson Mandela, South African president (1918-2013); John Glenn, US astronaut (1921-2016); Dennis Lillee, Australian cricketer (1949-); Shaun Micallef, Australian comedian (1962-); Vin Diesel, US actor (1967-); Elsa Pataky, Spanish model and actress (1976-); Kristen Bell, US actress (1980-).
Thought For Today:
Miracles are propitious accidents, the natural causes of which are too complicated to be readily understood - George Santayana, American philosopher (1863-1952).