On This Day

January 2006 in History

Events in History

  • Jan 1 Sydney, Australia swelters through its hottest New Year's Day then on record with the temperature peaking at 45 degrees celsius, sparking bush fires and power outages
  • Jan 4 Prime Minister Ariel Sharon of Israel suffers a second, apparently more serious stroke. His authority is transferred to acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.
  • Jan 8 A magnitude 6.9 earthquake with its epicenter just off the Greek island of Kythira hits much of the country and is felt throughout the entire eastern Mediterranean Sea.
  • Jan 12 A stampede during the Stoning the Devil ritual on the last day at the Hajj in Mina, Saudi Arabia, kills at least 362 Muslim pilgrims
  • Jan 12 Turkey releases Mehmet Ali Ağca from jail after he served 25 years for shooting Pope John Paul II
  • Jan 12 French warship Clemenceau reaches Egypt and is barred access to the Suez Canal. Greenpeace activists board the ship.
  • Jan 12 The foreign ministers of the United Kingdom, France, and Germany declare that negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program have reached a dead end and recommend that Iran be referred to the United Nations Security Council.

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

Jan 16 Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is sworn in as Liberia's new president. She becomes Africa's first female elected head of state.

Africa's 1st Elected Female Head of State Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf
Africa's 1st Elected Female Head of State
Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf
  • Jan 19 A Slovak Air Force Antonov An-24 crashes in Hungary.
  • Jan 19 The New Horizons probe is launched by NASA on the first mission to Pluto
  • Jan 19 Terrorist blows himself up in Tel Aviv, killing only himself but injuring 20 people, one of them seriously

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 22 Evo Morales is inaugurated as President of Bolivia, becoming the country's first indigenous president

1st Indigenous President of Bolivia Evo Morales
1st Indigenous President of Bolivia
Evo Morales

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

Jan 24 After losing the federal election to Stephen Harper, Paul Martin resigns as leader of the Liberal party

21st Prime Minister of Canada Paul Martin
21st Prime Minister of Canada
Paul Martin
22nd Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper
22nd Prime Minister of Canada
Stephen Harper
  • Jan 25 Three independent observing campaigns announce the discovery of OGLE-2005-BLG-390Lb through gravitational microlensing, the first cool rocky/icy extrasolar planet around a main-sequence star.
  • Jan 26 Western Union discontinues its telegram service.

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 31 Alan Greenspan retires as Chairman of the Federal Reserve

Economist and Chairman of the Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan
Economist and Chairman of the Federal Reserve
Alan Greenspan

AppointmentAppointment of Interest

Jan 31 US Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor retires and is replaced by Samuel Alito

1st Woman Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor
1st Woman Supreme Court Justice
Sandra Day O'Connor

Weddings in History

  • Jan 28 Jessica McClure (18), who at 18 months fell into an abandoned well weds Daniel Morales (32) in the Greenwood Church of Christ near Midland

Deaths in History

  • Jan 1 Harry Magdoff, American magazine editor, dies at 92
  • Jan 1 Hugh McLaughlin, Irish publisher & inventor, dies at 77
  • Jan 1 Dawn Lake, Australian TV comedienne, dies at 78
  • Jan 2 Cecilia Muñoz-Palma, first female Philippine Supreme Court Justice, dies at 92
  • Jan 3 Bill Skate, Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea (b. 1954)
  • Jan 4 Irving Layton, Canadian poet (b. 1912)
  • Jan 4 Robert Howard White, Mayor of Papatoetoe, New Zealand (b. 1914)
  • Jan 4 Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai (b. 1946)
  • Jan 5 Lord Merlyn-Rees, British politician (b. 1920)
  • Jan 6 Hugh Thompson Jr., American Vietnam War veteran who played a major role in ending the 1968 My Lai massacre, dies of cancer at 62
  • Jan 7 Heinrich Harrer, Austrian mountaineer and author (Seven Years in Tibet), dies at 93
  • Jan 8 Tony Banks, British politician (b. 1943)
  • Jan 11 Markus Löffel (Mark Spoon), German DJ (b. 1966)
  • Jan 11 Nixzmary Brown, American child abuse victim, dies from extreme abuse
  • Jan 14 Jim Gary, American sculptor (b. 1939)
  • Jan 15 Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, Emir of Kuwait, dies at 79
  • Jan 16 Stanley Biber, American physician, pioneer of transgender surgery, (b. 1923)
  • Jan 17 Clarence Ray Allen, American murderer (b. 1930)
  • Jan 17 Pierre Grondin, French Canadian cardiac surgeon (b. 1925)
  • Jan 18 Jan Twardowski, Polish poet (b. 1915)
  • Jan 19 Aoun Al-Sharif Qasim, Sudanese writer and Islamic scholar (b. 1933)
  • Jan 21 Ibrahim Rugova, Kosovar nationalist writer and President of Kosovo (1992-2006), dies at 61
  • Jan 21 Bedanand Jha, Nepalese politician
  • Jan 23 Chris McKinstry, Canadian scientist (b. 1967)
  • Jan 23 Virginia D. Smith, American politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Nebraska), dies at 94
  • Jan 24 Schafik Handal, Salvadoran politician
  • Jan 26 Khan Abdul Wali Khan, Pakistani opposition leader and Pashtun nationalist (b. 1917)
  • Jan 26 Carol Lambrino, son of Carol II of Romania and Zizi Lambrino (b. 1920)
  • Jan 27 Johannes Rau, 8th President of Germany (b. 1931)
  • Jan 27 Jean-Christophe Lafaille, French mountaineer best known for his solo self-rescue on Annapurna with a broken arm, presumed dead at 40
  • Jan 28 Yitzchak Kaduri, rabbi (b. around 1900)
  • Jan 30 Coretta Scott King, American activist and wife of Martin Luther King Jr., dies of ovarian cancer at 78
  • Jan 30 Wendy Wasserstein, American playwright (The Heidi Chronicles), dies of cancer at 55