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ⓘ 2008 was a leap year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar, the 2008th year of the Common Era and Anno Domini designations, the 8th year of the 3rd mill ..




                                     

ⓘ 2008

2008 was a leap year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar, the 2008th year of the Common Era and Anno Domini designations, the 8th year of the 3rd millennium, the 8th year of the 21st century, and the 9th year of the 2000s decade.

                                     

1.1. Events January

  • January 8 – An attempted assassination of Maldivian president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom is thwarted after a Boy Scout grabs the attackers knife. The Boy Scout is injured, but after a scuffle police arrest the attacker.
  • January 29 – Irans judiciary sentences to prison 54 Bahai Faith followers for anti-regime propaganda.
  • January 23 – Polish Air Force EADS CASA C-295 crashes on approach to the 12th Air Base near Miroslawiec. All 20 personnel on board die.
  • January 15 – The Federal Court of Australia orders a Japanese whaling company to stop research whaling within their Exclusive Economic Zone.
  • January 23 – Thousands of Palestinians cross into Egypt, as the border wall with Gaza in Rafah is blown up by militants.
  • January 24 – A peace deal ends the Kivu war in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
  • January 1 – Cyprus and Malta adopt the euro.
  • January 14 – At 19:04:39 UTC, the MESSENGER space probe is at its closest approach during its first flyby of the planet Mercury.
  • January 2 – The price of petroleum hits $100 per barrel for the first time.
  • January 25 – Chinas worst snowstorm since 1954 kills 133, delays traffic, and causes massive power outages in central and southern parts of the country.
  • January 3 – A car bomb detonates, killing at least 4 and injuring 68, in Diyarbakır, Turkey. Police blame Kurdish rebels.
  • January 22 – Russia stages the largest naval exercise since the fall of the Soviet Union in the Bay of Biscay. The Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, along with 11 support vessels and 47 long-range bomber aircraft, practises strike tactics off the coast of France and Spain, and test-launches nuclear-capable missiles in foreign waters.
  • January 12 – A Macedonian Army Mil Mi-17 helicopter crashes in thick fog southeast of Skopje, killing all 11 military personnel on board.
  • January 1 – A suicide bombing occurs in Zayouna, Baghdad, killing over 25 people during a funeral over the deaths from the preceding attack.
  • January 21 – Stock markets around the world plunge amid growing fears of a U.S. recession, fueled by the 2007 subprime mortgage crisis.
                                     

1.2. Events February

  • February 12 – PDVSA, a state oil company in Venezuela, suspends sales of crude oil to ExxonMobil, in response to a legal challenge by them.
  • February 20 – A total lunar eclipse crosses North and South America, Europe, Africa, and Southwest Asia.
  • February 4 – Iran opens its first space center and launches a rocket into space.
  • February 22 – No survivors are found after a rescue helicopter discovers the wreckage of Santa Barbara Airlines Flight 518 just northeast of Merida, Venezuela. The commercial plane had 46 people on board, including crew.
  • February 4 – A Palestinian suicide bomber kills 1 and wounds 13 in a Dimona, Israel shopping center.
  • February 12 – Bridgestone, under investigation for an alleged price-fixing cartel, uncovers improper payments of at least 150 million Japanese yen to foreign governments and withdraws from the marine hose business.
  • February 2 – Rebels attack the capital of Chad, NDjamena.
  • February 5–6 – A tornado outbreak, the deadliest in 23 years, kills 58 in the Southern United States.
  • February 18 – A general election is held in Pakistan, delayed from January 8 due to riots in the wake of the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. Opposition parties, including Bhuttos, take more than half of the seats, while President Pervez Musharrafs party suffers a huge defeat.
  • February 5 – U.S. stock market indices plunge more than 3% after a report shows signs of economic recession in the service sector. The S&P 500 fall 3.2%, The Dow Jones Industrial Average 370 points.
  • February 10 – The 2008 Namdaemun fire severely damages Namdaemun, the first National Treasure of South Korea.
  • February 20 – The United States Navy destroys a spy satellite containing toxic fuel, by shooting it down with a missile launched from the USS Lake Erie in the Pacific Ocean.
  • February 7 – STS-122: Space Shuttle Atlantis launches to deliver the European-built Columbus science laboratory to the International Space Station.
  • February 22 – Former building society Northern Rock is the first bank in Europe to be taken into state control, due to the U.S. subprime mortgage financial crisis.
  • February 19 – Fidel Castro announces his resignation as President of Cuba, effective February 24.
  • February 18 – The British government introduces emergency legislation temporarily to nationalize Northern Rock, the 5th largest mortgage bank in the UK, due to the banks financial crisis.
  • February 13 – Prime Minister Kevin Rudd of Australia delivers a formal apology to the Stolen Generations.
  • February 17 – Kosovo formally declares independence from Serbia, with support from some countries but opposition from others.
  • February 24 – Raul Castro is unanimously elected as President of Cuba by the National Assembly.
  • February 11 – President of East Timor Jose Ramos-Horta is seriously wounded in an attack on his home by rebel soldiers. Rebel leader Alfredo Reinado is killed by Ramos-Hortas security guards during the attack.
                                     

1.3. Events March

  • March 25 – African Union and Comoros forces invade the rebel-held island of Anjouan.
  • March 2 – 2008 Andean diplomatic crisis: Venezuela and Ecuador move troops to the Colombian border, following a Colombian raid against FARC guerrillas inside Ecuadors national territory, in which senior commander Raul Reyes is killed.
  • March 9 – The first European Space Agency Automated Transfer Vehicle, a cargo spacecraft for the International Space Station, launches from Guiana Space Centre in French Guiana.
  • March 19 – An exploding star halfway across the visible universe becomes the farthest known object ever visible to the naked eye.
  • March 29 – Presidential and parliamentary elections are held in Zimbabwe.
  • March 24 – Bhutan holds its first-ever general elections.
  • March 15 – A gun factory explosion in Gerdec, Albania kills more than 30. Over the following week, Albania, Kosovo, and some surrounding countries supply and support Gerdecs population with food, blood, etc.
  • March 6 – Eight Israeli civilians are killed and 9 wounded when a Palestinian attacker opens fire at a Jewish seminary in Jerusalem.
  • March–April – Rising food and fuel prices trigger riots and unrest in the Third World.
  • March 1 – In Gaza Strip, at least 52 Palestinians and 2 Israeli soldiers are killed in the most intense Israeli air strikes since 2005.
  • March 14 – Demonstrations by Tibetan separatists turn violent as rioters target government and Han Chinese-owned buildings.
  • March 25 – A 414 square kilometer 160 sq. mi. 2 chunk of Antarcticas Wilkins Ice Shelf disintegrates, leaving the entire shelf at risk.


                                     

1.4. Events April

  • April 28 – India sets a world record by sending 10 satellites into orbit in a single launch.
  • April 27 – The Taliban attempts to assassinate Afghan President Hamid Karzai in a military parade in Kabul.
  • April 17 – Raila Odinga becomes the new Prime Minister of Kenya after the formation of a coalition government, ending the political crisis in Kenya.
  • April 15 – A Hewa Bora Airways DC-9 crashes into a residential area of Goma, Democratic Republic of the Congo.
  • April 8 – Privy Council of Sark dismantles its feudal system to comply with the European Convention on Human Rights. and the first elections under the new law will be held in December 2008 and the new chamber will first convene in January 2009.
  • April 28 – 71 die in a train crash in Shandong, China.
  • April 22 – Surgeons at Londons Moorfields Eye Hospital perform the first operations using bionic eyes, implanting them into 2 blind patients.
                                     

1.5. Events May

  • May 14 – NASA announces the discovery of Supernova remnant G1.9+0.3.
  • May 12 – Over 69.000 are killed in central south-west China by the Wenchuan quake, an earthquake measuring 7.9 Moment magnitude scale. The epicenter is 90 kilometers 55 miles west-northwest of the provincial capital Chengdu, Sichuan province.
  • May 8 – Start of armed clashes and fighting in Lebanon.
  • May 3 – Over 133.000 in Burma/Myanmar are killed by Cyclone Nargis, the deadliest natural disaster since the Boxing Day Tsunami in 2004.
  • May 23 – The Union of South American Nations, a supranational union, is created by a union between the Andean Community and Mercosur.
  • May 13 – A series of bomb blasts kills at least 63 and injures 216 in Jaipur, India.
  • May 7 – Dmitry Medvedev takes office as President of Russia, replacing Vladimir Putin.
  • May 15 – An oil pipeline explosion in Ijegun, Nigeria kills 100.
  • May 28 – The Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal is established after the Assembly votes overwhelmingly in favor of abolishing the countrys 240-year-old monarchy. Girija Prasad Koirala becomes temporary head of state.
  • May 30 – The Convention on Cluster Munitions is adopted in Dublin.
  • May 23 – The International Court of Justice awards Middle Rocks to Malaysia and Pedra Branca to Singapore, ending a 29-year territorial dispute between the 2 countries.
  • May 25 – NASAs Phoenix spacecraft becomes the first to land on the northern polar region of Mars.
  • May 11 – Burma/Myanmar holds a constitutional referendum.
                                     

1.6. Events June

  • June 10 – Fire engulfs Sudan Airways Flight 109 after it lands in Khartoum, killing 44.
  • June 8 – In the Akihabara area of Tokyo, Japan, a 25-year-old man stabs seven to death and wounds 10, before being arrested.
  • June 11 – The Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope is launched.
  • June 2 – A car bomb explodes outside the Danish embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan, killing at least five.
  • June 1 – A fire at Universal Studios Hollywood destroys 118.000 to 175.000 copies of master tapes.
  • June 14 – September 14 – Expo 2008 is held in Zaragoza, Spain, with the topic of "Water and sustainable development".
  • June 27 – President Robert Mugabe is reelected with 85.5% of the vote in the second round of the controversial Zimbabwean presidential election.
  • June 11 – Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper apologizes to Canadas First Nations for the Canadian residential school system.
  • June 27 – After three decades as the Chairman of Microsoft Corporation, Bill Gates steps down from daily duties to concentrate on philanthropy.
  • June 12 – Ireland votes to reject the Treaty of Lisbon, in the only referendum to be held by a European Union member state on the treaty.
  • June 22 – Typhoon Fengshen hits the Philippines and capsizes the ferry MV Princess of the Stars, leaving hundreds dead or missing.
  • June 14 – A 6.9 magnitude earthquake in Iwate Prefecture, Japan, kills 12 and injures more than 400.


                                     

1.7. Events July

  • July 7–9 – The 34th G8 summit is held in Tōyako, Hokkaidō, Japan.
  • July 15–20 – World Youth Day takes place in Sydney, Australia. Pope Benedict XVI appears at the event.
  • July 27 – At least 17 are killed and over 154 wounded in 2 blasts in Istanbul.
  • July 21 – Radovan Karadzic, the first president of the Republika Srpska, is arrested in Belgrade, Serbia on allegations of war crimes, following a 12-year long manhunt.
  • July 28 – At least 48 are dead and over 287 injured after bombs explode in Baghdad and Kirkuk, Iraq.
  • July 25 – A series of seven bomb blasts rock Bangalore, India, killing two and injuring 20; the next day, a series of bomb blasts in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, kills 45 and injures over 160 people.
  • July 7 – A suicide-bomber drives an explosives-laden automobile into the front gates of the Indian embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, killing 58 and injuring over 150.
  • July 22 – The United Progressive Alliance-led government in India survives a crucial no-confidence vote, based on disagreements between the Indian National Congress and Left Front, over the Indo-US nuclear deal.
  • July 10 – Former Macedonian Interior Minister Ljube Boskoski is acquitted of all charges, by a UN Tribunal accusing him of war crimes.
  • July 2 – Ingrid Betancourt and 14 other hostages are rescued from FARC by Colombian security forces.
  • July 23 – Ram Baran Yadav is sworn in as the first President of Nepal.
                                     

1.8. Events August

  • August 19 – Taliban insurgents kill 10 and injure 21 French soldiers in an ambush in Afghanistan.
  • August 15 – Pushpa Kamal Dahal known as Prachanda is sworn in as the first Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, after the Nepalese monarchy was abolished in May.
  • August 24 – An aircraft crashes in Guatemala, killing 10, including four Americans on a humanitarian mission.
  • August 17 – Michael Phelps surpasses Mark Spitz in Gold Medals won at a single Olympics, winning eight.
  • August 1 – George Tupou V is crowned as the new King of Tonga, an event that had been delayed for over two years following the 2006 Nukualofa riots.
  • August 26 – September 1 – Hurricane Gustav makes landfall on Louisiana as Category 2 and kills seven in the United States, after making landfall on western Cuba as Category 4, and killing 66 in Haiti, eight in the Dominican Republic, and 11 in Jamaica.
  • August 7 – The 2008 South Ossetia war begins, as Georgia and Russia launch a major offensive inside the separatist region of South Ossetia after days of border skirmishes between the two sides.
  • August 24 – Iran Aseman Airlines Flight 6895 crashes upon takeoff near Manas International Airport in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, killing 68.
  • August 20 – Spanair Flight 5022, from Madrid to Gran Canaria, skids off the runway and crashes at Barajas Airport with 172 on board. Of them, 154 die and 18 survive.
  • August 4 – Two members of the East Turkestan Islamic Movement, which had threatened to attack the Beijing Olympics, kill 16 and injure another 16 officers at a police station in Kashgar, Xinjiang, China.
  • August 18 – Pervez Musharraf resigns as President of Pakistan, under impeachment pressure from the coalition government.
  • August 19 – A suicide bomber rams a car into an Algerian military academy, killing 43 and injuring 45.
  • August 26 – Russia unilaterally recognizes the independence of Georgian breakaway republics Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
  • August 3 – A stampede at a Hindu temple at Naina Devi in Bilaspur, Himachal Pradesh, India kills 162 and injures 400.
  • August 6 – President Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdallahi of Mauritania is deposed in a military coup detat.
  • August 1 – A total eclipse of the Sun is visible from Canada and extends across northern Greenland, the Arctic, central Russia, Mongolia, and China.
  • August 28 – September 7 – Hurricane Hanna kills seven in the United States, and 529 in Haiti, mostly due to floods and mudslides.
  • August 21 – At least 60 die following twin suicide bombings outside the Pakistan Ordnance Factories in Wah, Pakistan.
  • August 8–24 – The 2008 Summer Olympics take place in Beijing, China.
  • August 22 – Pirates hijack German, Iranian, and Japanese cargo ships off the coast of Somalia, in seven such attacks since June 20.
                                     

1.9. Events September

  • September 6 – At least eight boulders dislodge from a cliff near Cairo, Egypt, killing at least 90 and burying an estimated 500 people.
  • September 3 – Presidents Dimitris Christofias and Mehmet Ali Talat hold peace talks in Nicosia, aimed at reunifying Cyprus.
  • September 1–14 – Hurricane Ike makes landfall on Texas as Category 2 and kills 27 in the United States, after killing four in Cuba, one in the Dominican Republic, and 75 in Haiti.
  • September 6 – Asif Ali Zardari is elected President of Pakistan by the Electoral College of Pakistan.
  • September 20 – A suicide truck bomb explosion destroys the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, Pakistan, killing at least 60 and injuring 266.
  • September 24 – The Diet of Japan elects Taro Aso as the new Prime Minister of Japan.
  • September 2 – Political crisis in Thailand: Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej of Thailand declares a state of emergency in Bangkok.
  • September 21 – President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa resigns after accepting a call by the African National Congress.
  • September 15 – Lehman Brothers files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
  • September 28 – SpaceX Falcon 1 becomes the worlds first privately developed space launch vehicle to successfully make orbit.
  • September 17 – The International Astronomical Union classifies Haumea as the 5th dwarf planet in the Solar System.
  • September 25 – Shenzhou 7, the third manned Chinese spaceflight and the first with three crew members, is successfully launched. China becomes the third country ever to conduct a spacewalk.
  • September 2 – Prime Minister of Japan Yasuo Fukuda resigns, less than a year after taking office following Shinzo Abes resignation.
  • September 30 – A Jodhpur temple stampede in western India kills over 224 people, and injures 400.
  • September 9 – Political crisis in Thailand: The Constitutional Court of Thailand orders Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej to resign, after he is paid for appearing on a television cooking show.
  • September 3 – Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani of Pakistan survives an assassination attempt near Islamabad, while on his way to meet British Leader of the Opposition David Cameron.
  • September 19–25 – Typhoon Hagupit kills 17 in China, eight in the Philippines, one in Taiwan, and 41 in Vietnam.
  • September 15 – Following negotiations, President Robert Mugabe and opposition leaders Morgan Tsvangirai and Arthur Mutambara sign a power-sharing deal, making Tsvangirai the new Prime Minister of Zimbabwe.
  • September 12 – A Metrolink train collides head-on into a freight train in Los Angeles, California, killing 25 and injuring 130.
  • September 10 – The proton beam is circulated for the first time in the Large Hadron Collider, the worlds largest and highest-energy particle accelerator, located at CERN, near Geneva, under the Franco-Swiss border.
  • September 14 – Aeroflot Flight 821 crashes near the city of Perm, Russia, killing all 88 on board.
  • September 25 – Kgalema Motlanthe is elected by the National Assembly of South Africa as the President of South Africa, succeeding Thabo Mbeki.
                                     

1.10. Events October

  • October 7 – The meteoroid 2008 TC 3 impacts Earth, becoming the first such object to be discovered prior to impact.
  • October 29 – Delta Air Lines merges with Northwest Airlines, forming the worlds largest commercial carrier.
  • October 6 – An earthquake measuring 6.6 magnitude kills at least 65 in Kyrgyzstan.
  • October 17 – The United Nations General Assembly elects Turkey, Austria, Japan, Uganda, and Mexico to two-year terms on the Security Council.
  • October 29 – Global financial crisis: Hungarys currency and stock markets rise on the news that it will receive an international economic bailout package worth $25 billion from the IMF, European Union, and World Bank.
  • October 22 – The Indian Space Research Organisation successfully launches theChandrayaan-1 spacecraft on a lunar exploration mission.
  • October 9 – Global financial crisis: Following a major banking and financial crisis in Iceland, the Icelandic Financial Supervisory Authority takes control of the three largest banks in the country: Kaupthing Bank, Landsbanki, and Glitnir.
  • October 7 – Global financial crisis: Russia agrees to provide Iceland with a four-billion-euro loan.
  • October 21 – The Large Hadron Collider LHC is officially inaugurated. It is a collaboration of over 10.000 scientists and engineers from over 100 countries as well as hundreds of universities and laboratories.
  • October 6 – NASAs MESSENGER spacecraft makes its second of three flybys of Mercury, decreasing the velocity for orbital insertion on March 18, 2011.
  • October 3 – Global financial crisis: U.S. President George W. Bush signs the revised Emergency Economic Stabilization Act into law, creating a 700 billion dollar Treasury fund to purchase failing bank assets.


                                     

1.11. Events November

  • November 25 – A car bomb in St. Petersburg, Russia, kills three people and injures one.
  • November 22 – 23 – The APEC Peru 2008 Summit is held in Lima.
  • November 29 – Riots in Jos, Nigeria kill 381, and injure at least 300.
  • November 11 – The RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 departs on her last voyage from Southampton, UK to Dubai, UAE. She will become a floating hotel at Palm Jumeirah.
  • November 4 – United States presidential election, 2008: Barack Obama is elected the 44th President of the United States and Joe Biden is elected the 47th Vice President. Barack Obama becomes the first African-American President-elect.
  • November 14 – STS-126: The Space Shuttle Endeavour uses the MPLM Leonardo to deliver experiment and storage racks to the International Space Station. There will be only three more launches of Space Shuttle Endeavour after this mission.
  • November 7 – The 2008 Petionville school collapse kills at least 92 in Petionville, Haiti.
  • November 19 – Claudia Castillo of Spain becomes the first person to have a successful trachea transplant using a tissue-engineered organ.
  • November 8 – An accident aboard Russian submarine K-152 Nerpa kills 20.
  • November 27 – The longest serving Ocean Liner in history, QE2 is retired from service.
  • November 25 – Greenland holds a referendum for increased autonomy from Denmark. The vote is over 75% in favour.
  • November 6 – King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck of Bhutan is crowned, having ascended to the throne in 2006.
  • November 24 – The 2008 Santa Catarina floods in Santa Catarina, Brazil kill 126 and force the evacuation of over 78.000 people.
  • November 25 – Political crisis in Thailand: Protesters from the Peoples Alliance for Democracy party storm into Suvarnabhumi Airport and block flights from taking off. More protesters seize control of Don Mueang Airport the following day.
  • November 26 – November 29 – A series of terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India by Pakistan-based Islamic militants kills 195, and injures at least 250.
  • November 20 – The 2008 Prairie meteoroid falls over Canada.
                                     

1.12. Events December

  • December 6 – Riots spread across Greece after a 15-year-old boy is shot dead by a special guard of the Greek Police.
  • December 10 – The Channel Island of Sark, a British crown dependency, holds its first fully democratic elections under a new constitutional arrangement, becoming the last European territory to abolish feudalism.
  • December 3 – The Convention on Cluster Munitions opens for signature in Oslo.
  • December 5 – Human remains found in 1991 are identified as Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, using DNA analysis.
  • December 12 – The Moon moves into its nearest point to Earth, called perigee, at the same time as its fullest phase of the Lunar Cycle. The Moon appears to be 14% bigger and 30% brighter than the years other full moons. The next time these two events coincide will be in 2016.
  • December 1 – A triangular conjunction formed by a new Moon, Venus and Jupiter is a prominent object in the evening sky.
  • December 21 – Gwadar port, Pakistan becomes fully operational.
  • December 29 – Bangladesh holds its general elections after two years of political unrest over the interim government.
  • December 31 – An extra leap second 23:59:60 is added to end the year. The last time this occurred was in 2005.
  • December 23 – A military coup detat is announced in Guinea shortly after the death of long-time President Lansana Conte.
  • December 4 – Political crisis in Canada: Governor General Michaelle Jean grants the request of Prime Minister Stephen Harper to prorogue Parliament until January 26, 2009, averting a motion of no-confidence by the new opposition coalition led by the Leader of the Opposition Stephane Dion, and the New Democratic Party leader Jack Layton, with Bloc Quebecois leader Gilles Duceppe as a coalition partner.
  • December 16 – Ruins of an ancient Wari city are discovered in northern Peru.
  • December 18 – The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda convicts Theoneste Bagosora and two other senior Rwandan army officers of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes and sentences them to life imprisonment.
  • December 12 – Switzerland becomes the 25th European country to join the Schengen Agreement, whereby cross-border passport checks will be abolished.
  • December 27 – Israel initiates a series of airstrikes followed by an invasion in Gaza Strip, killing at least 1300 including at least 416 children and wounding over 2.700.
  • December 2 – Political crisis in Thailand: After weeks of opposition-led protests, the Constitutional Court of Thailand dissolves the governing Peoples Power Party and two coalition member parties, and bans leaders of the parties, including Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat, from politics for five years. As such, Wongsawat promptly resigns and is replaced by Deputy Prime Minister Chaovarat Chanweerakul as caretaker Prime Minister.
                                     

2.1. Deaths January

  • January 26 – George Habash, Palestinian politician b. 1926
  • January 22 – Heath Ledger, Australian actor b. 1979
  • January 27 – Suharto, President of Indonesia b. 1921
  • January 22 – Claude Piron, Swiss linguist and psychologist b. 1931
  • January 28 – Christodoulos, Archbishop of Athens b. 1939
  • January 19 – Suzanne Pleshette, American actress b. 1937
  • January 16 – Nikola Kljusev, Macedonian Prime Minister b. 1927
  • January 17 – Bobby Fischer, American-Icelandic chess grandmaster b. 1943
  • January 27 – Gordon B. Hinckley, American Mormon leader b. 1910
  • January 11 – Edmund Hillary, New Zealand mountaineer, explorer, and philanthropist b. 1919
  • January 28 - Miklos Torok, Romanian politician of Hungarian nationalities. b. 1953
  • January 10 – Maila Nurmi, Finnish-American actress and television personality b. 1921
  • January 3 – Yo-Sam Choi, Korean boxer b. 1972
  • January 15 – Brad Renfro, American actor b. 1982
                                     

2.2. Deaths February

  • February 11 – Alfredo Reinado, East Timorese rebel b. 1967
  • February 2 – Joshua Lederberg, American molecular biologist and Nobel Prize laureate b. 1925
  • February 7 – Andrew Bertie, British Grand Master of the Order of Malta b. 1929
  • February 9 – Baba Amte, Indian social activist b. 1914
  • February 11 – Tom Lantos, American politician b. 1928
  • February 5 – Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Indian spiritual leader b. 1917
  • February 10 – Roy Scheider, American actor b. 1932
  • February 27 – Ivan Rebroff, German singer b. 1931
  • February 13 – Henri Salvador, French singer b. 1917
  • February 23 – Paul Frere, Belgian racing driver b. 1917
  • February 12 – Badri Patarkatsishvili, Georgian businessman and politician b. 1955
  • February 23 – Janez Drnovsek, Slovenian President and Prime Minister of b. 1950
  • February 13 – Kon Ichikawa, Japanese movie director b. 1915
  • February 19 – Natalia Bessmertnova, Russian ballerina b. 1941
  • February 27 – William F. Buckley, Jr., American writer and conservative commentator b. 1925
  • February 12 – Imad Mughniyah, Lebanese militant b. 1962
  • February 18 – Alain Robbe-Grillet, French writer and movie maker b. 1922
  • February 19 – Yegor Letov, Russian singer b. 1964
                                     

2.3. Deaths March

  • March 19 – Hugo Claus, Flemish writer, painter and movie director b. 1929
  • March 3 – Giuseppe Di Stefano, Italian operatic tenor b. 1921
  • March 18 – Anthony Minghella, English movie director and screenwriter b. 1954
  • March 19 – Arthur C. Clarke, English writer, inventor, and futurist b. 1917
  • March 3 – Norman Smith, English singer and record producer b. 1923
  • March 2 – Jeff Healey, Canadian musician b. 1966
  • March 5 – Joseph Weizenbaum, German-American writer and computer scientist b. 1923
  • March 1 – Raul Reyes, Colombian guerrilla b. 1948
  • March 6 – Peter Poreku Dery, Ghanaian cardinal b. 1918
  • March 14 – Chiara Lubich, Italian Catholic activist b. 1920
  • March 4 – Gary Gygax, American writer and game designer b. 1938
  • March 19 – Paul Scofield, English actor b. 1922
  • March 24 – Neil Aspinall, British record producer and business executive b. 1942
  • March 27 – Jean-Marie Balestre, French sports executive b. 1921
  • March 26 – Manuel Marulanda, Colombian guerrilla b. 1930
  • March 30 – Dith Pran, Cambodian-American photojournalist b. 1942
  • March 22 – Adolfo Suarez Rivera, Mexican cardinal b. 1927
  • March 31 – Jules Dassin, American movie director b. 1911
  • March 24 – Richard Widmark, American actor b. 1914
                                     

2.4. Deaths April

  • April 5 – Charlton Heston, American actor b. 1923
  • April 13 – John Archibald Wheeler, American theoretical physicist b. 1911
  • April 16 – Edward Norton Lorenz, American mathematician and meteorologist b. 1917
  • April 12 – Patrick Hillery, 6th President of Ireland b. 1923
  • April 15 – Benoit Lamy, Belgian movie writer-director b. 1945
  • April 10 – Ernesto Corripio y Ahumada, Mexican cardinal b. 1919
  • April 3 – Hrvoje Custic, Croatian footballer b. 1983
  • April 29 – Albert Hofmann, Swiss chemist and writer, discoverer of LSD b. 1906
  • April 14 – Ollie Johnston, American animator b. 1912
  • April 17 – Aime Cesaire, French Martinican poet and politician b. 1913
                                     

2.5. Deaths May

  • May 3 – Leopoldo Calvo Sotelo, Spanish Prime Minister of b. 1926
  • May 24 – Rob Knox, British actor b. 1989
  • May 15 – Willis Lamb, American physicist and Nobel Prize laureate b. 1913
  • May 26 – Sydney Pollack, American actor, director, and producer b. 1934
  • May 13 – Saad Al-Abdullah Al-Salim Al-Sabah, Emir of Kuwait b. 1930
  • May 12 – Irena Sendler, Polish humanitarian b. 1910
  • May 28 – Sven Davidson, Swedish tennis player b. 1928
  • May 13 – Bernardin Gantin, Beninese cardinal b. 1922
  • May 29 – Luc Bourdon, Canadian Hockey player b. 1987
  • May 1 – Anthony Mamo, 1st President of Malta b. 1909
  • May 10 – Leyla Gencer, Turkish soprano b. 1928
  • May 8 – François Sterchele, Belgian footballer b. 1982
  • May 12 – Robert Rauschenberg, American pop artist b. 1925
  • May 23 – Cornell Capa, Hungarian-American photographer b. 1918
  • May 2 – Philipp von Boeselager, German military officer b. 1917
                                     

2.6. Deaths June

  • June 9 – Karen Asrian, Armenian chess grandmaster b. 1980
  • June 8 – Saban Bajramovic, Serbian musician b. 1936
  • June 9 – Algis Budrys, Lithuanian-American science fiction writer b. 1931
  • June 28 – Ruslana Korshunova, Kazakhstani model b. 1987
  • June 1 – Tommy Lapid, Israeli television presenter, journalist, and politician b. 1931
  • June 18 – Jean Delannoy, French movie director b. 1908
  • June 15 – Stan Winston, American special effects and makeup artist b. 1946
  • June 10 – Chinghiz Aitmatov, Kyrgyzstani writer b. 1928
  • June 11 – Võ Van Kiet, Vietnamese prime minister b. 1922
  • June 11 – Ove Andersson, Swedish rally driver b. 1939
  • June 4 – Agata Mroz-Olszewska, Polish volleyball player b. 1982
  • June 7 – Dino Risi, Italian director b. 1916
  • June 27 – Sam Manekshaw, Field Marshall of Indian Army b.1914
  • June 24 – Leonid Hurwicz, American economist and mathematician, Nobel Prize laureate b. 1917
  • June 22 – George Carlin, American writer, actor, and comedian b. 1937
  • June 2 – Bo Diddley, American musician b. 1928
  • June 29 – Don S. Davis, American actor b. 1942
  • June 13 – Tim Russert, American journalist b. 1950
  • June 3 – Mel Ferrer, American actor, director, and producer b. 1917
  • June 17 – Cyd Charisse, American actress and dancer b. 1922
  • June 1 – Yves Saint Laurent, French fashion designer b. 1936
  • June 23 – Arthur Chung, President of Guyana b. 1918
                                     

2.7. Deaths July

  • July 12 – Tony Snow, American political commentator b. 1955
  • July 13 – Bronislaw Geremek, Polish social historian and politician b. 1932
  • July 4 – Evelyn Keyes, American actress b. 1916
  • July 11 – Michael E. DeBakey, American surgeon and inventor b. 1908
  • July 22 – Estelle Getty, American actress b. 1923
  • July 29 – Mate Parlov, Croatian boxer b. 1948
  • July 23 – Kurt Furgler, Swiss politician b. 1924
  • July 9 – Seamus Brennan, Irish politician b. 1948
  • July 25 – Johnny Griffin, American saxophonist b. 1928
  • July 5 – Rene Harris, President of Nauru b. 1947
  • July 25 – Randy Pausch, American writer and computer scientist b. 1960
  • July 15 – Gyorgy Kolonics, Hungarian canoeist b. 1972
  • July 27 – Youssef Chahine, Egyptian movie director b. 1926
  • July 4 – Jesse Helms, American politician b. 1921
                                     

2.8. Deaths August

  • August 28 – Phil Hill, American race car driver b. 1927
  • August 16 – Ronnie Drew, Irish singer b. 1934
  • August 1 – Harkishan Singh Surjeet, Indian politician b. 1916
  • August 9 – Mahmoud Darwish, Palestinian poet b. 1941
  • August 9 – Bernie Mac, American actor and comedian b. 1957
  • August 20 – Hua Guofeng, Chinese premier b. 1921
  • August 19 – Levy Mwanawasa, President of Zambia b. 1948
  • August 13 – Henri Cartan, French mathematician b. 1904
  • August 3 – Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Russian writer, Nobel Prize laureate b. 1918
  • August 11 – Fred Sinowatz, Austrian politician b. 1929
  • August 10 – Isaac Hayes, African-American musician b. 1942
  • August 15 – Jerry Wexler, American music producer b. 1917
  • August 23 – Thomas Huckle Weller, American virologist, Nobel Prize laureate b. 1915
  • August 16 – Masanobu Fukuoka, Japanese microbiologist b. 1913
                                     

2.9. Deaths September

  • September 26 – Paul Newman, American actor b. 1925
  • September 6 – Anita Page, American actress b. 1910
  • September 18 – Mauricio Kagel, Argentine composer b. 1931
  • September 9 – Nouhak Phoumsavanh, President of Laos b. 1910
  • September 15 – Richard Wright, English musician b. 1943
  • September 1 – Don LaFontaine, American voice actor b. 1940
  • September 12 – David Foster Wallace, American writer b. 1962
  • September 6 – Antonio Innocenti, Italian cardinal b. 1915
                                     

2.10. Deaths October

  • October 1 – Boris Efimov, Russian political cartoonist b. 1900
  • October 26 – Tony Hillerman, American writer b. 1925
  • October 13 – Antonio Jose Gonzalez Zumarraga, Ecuadorian cardinal b. 1925
  • October 10 – Alexey Prokurorov, Russian cross-country skier b. 1964
  • October 6 – Paavo Haavikko, Finnish poet b. 1931
  • October 8 – George Emil Palade, Romanian cell biologist, Nobel Prize laureate b. 1912
  • October 11 – Jorg Haider, Austrian politician b. 1950
  • October 20 – Soeur Emmanuelle, Belgian-born French nun b. 1908
  • October 13 – Alexei Cherepanov, Russian Hockey Player b. 1989
  • October 25 – Muslim Magomayev, Azerbaijani singer b. 1942
  • October 10 – Kazuyoshi Miura, Japanese businessman b. 1947
  • October 31 – Studs Terkel, American writer and liberal commentator b. 1912
  • October 13 – Guillaume Depardieu, French actor b. 1971
                                     

2.11. Deaths November

  • November 12 – Mitch Mitchell, English drummer b. 1946
  • November 1 – Jacques Piccard, Swiss explorer and engineer b. 1922
  • November 4 – Michael Crichton, American writer and producer b. 1942
  • November 27 – Vishwanath Pratap Singh, Indian Prime Minister b. 1931
  • November 14 – Tsvetanka Khristova, Bulgarian athlete b. 1962
  • November 10 – Miriam Makeba, South African singer b. 1932
  • November 29 – Jorn Utzon, Danish architect b. 1918
  • November 13 – Paco Ignacio Taibo I, Mexican writer and journalist b. 1924
  • November 1 – Yma Sumac, Peruvian soprano b. 1922
  • November 10 – Kiyoshi Itō, Japanese mathematician b. 1915
  • November 22 – Ibrahim Nasir, Maldivian President b. 1926
  • November 4 – Juan Camilo Mouriño, Mexican politician b. 1971
                                     

2.12. Deaths December

  • December 5 – Nina Foch, Dutch-born American actress b. 1924
  • December 1 – Mikel Laboa, Basque singer and songwriter b. 1934
  • December 9 – Yuri Glazkov, Russian cosmonaut b. 1939
  • December 9 – Drazan Jerkovic, Croatian football player and manager b. 1936
  • December 20 – Robert Mulligan, American director b. 1925
  • December 20 – Olga Lepeshinskaya, Russian ballerina b. 1916
  • December 24 – Harold Pinter, English playwright b. 1930
  • December 12 – Van Johnson, American actor b. 1916
  • December 22 – Lansana Conte, President of Guinea b. 1934
  • December 15 - Leon Febres Cordero, 46th President of Ecuador b. 1931
  • December 25 – Eartha Kitt, American singer and actress b. 1927
  • December 2 – Odetta, American singer b. 1930
  • December 11 – Daniel Carleton Gajdusek, American physician, Nobel Prize laureate b. 1923
  • December 11 – Bettie Page, American pin-up model b. 1923
  • December 13 – Horst Tappert, German actor b. 1923
  • December 18 – Mark Felt, American FBI agent, "Deep Throat" from the Watergate scandal b. 1913
  • December 12 – Tassos Papadopoulos, 5th President of Cyprus b. 1934
  • December 24 – Samuel P. Huntington, American political scientist b. 1927
  • December 18 – Majel Barrett, American actress b. 1932
  • December 29 – Freddie Hubbard, American jazz trumpeter b. 1938
  • December 12 – Avery Dulles, American Roman Catholic Cardinal b. 1918
  • December 5 – Alexy II, Russian Orthodox Patriarch b. 1929
                                     

3. Awards

Nobel Prizes

  • Chemistry – Martin Chalfie, Osamu Shimomura, Roger Y. Tsien
  • Physiology or Medicine – Françoise Barre-Sinoussi, Harald zur Hausen, Luc Montagnier
  • Literature – Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clezio
  • Physics – Makoto Kobayashi, Toshihide Maskawa, Yoichiro Nambu
  • Economics – Paul Krugman
  • Peace – Martti Ahtisaari
                                     

4. Major religious holidays

  • February 7 – Chinese New Year
  • April 13 – Vaisakhi
  • December 25 – Christmas in Western Christianity
  • January 10 – Islamic New Year by Lunar calendar
  • March 21 – Good Friday
  • September 4- Janmastami -Birth of Lord Krishna
  • January 7 – Christmas in Eastern Christianity
  • September 2 – Start of Ramadan
  • August 1 – Lammas, a Cross-quarter day
  • July 5 – Saints Cyril and Methodius day in Eastern Christianity
  • October 1 – Eid ul-Fitr
  • December 21 – December Solstice, also known as Yule
  • June 5 – Ascension of Jesus in Eastern Christianity
  • April 20 – Passover, Palm Sunday in Eastern Christianity
  • December 8 – Immaculate Conception
  • December 8 – Eid al-Adha
  • February 6 – Ash Wednesday, observance of Lent begins
  • October 13 – Sukkot
  • June 9 – Shavuot
  • April 27 – Pascha or Easter in Eastern Christianity
  • March 20 – Purim
  • August 16 – Raksha Bandhan
  • November 1 – Samhain, a Cross-quarter day and Neopagan new year
  • May 1 – Beltane, a Cross-quarter day
  • May 19 or May 20 – Vesak the birthday of the Buddha in Buddhism
  • March 23 – Easter Sunday, the earliest Easter has fallen since 1913
  • October 9 – Yom Kippur
  • March 15 – Saint Patricks Day, celebrated in Ireland, the United States, and most of the English-speaking world. Held on March 15 instead of the usual 17th to avoid the second day in Holy Week. This March 17 will be the last one to fall within Holy Week until 2160.
  • March 22 – Holi
  • February 5 – Carnival Shrove Tuesday
  • October 28 – Diwali
  • June 15 – Pentecost in Eastern Christianity
  • September 1 – New Liturgical Year in Eastern Christianity
  • March 1 – Saint Davids Day, celebrated in Wales and the United States.
  • September 22 – September Equinox, also known as Mabon
  • June 20 – June Solstice, also known as Midsummer or Litha
  • August 15 – Assumption of Mary
  • September 30 – Rosh Hashanah
  • December 21 – Hanukkah begins at sundown
  • March 21 – Nowruz Iranian New Year holiday
  • June 22 – All Saints Day in Eastern Christianity
  • March 20 – March Equinox, also known as Ostara
  • May 1 – Ascension of Jesus in Western Christianity
                                     
  • The 2008 Atlantic hurricane season is when many of the tropical cyclones formed in the Atlantic Ocean in 2008 The season started on June 1 and ended
  • The 2008 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIX Olympiad, were celebrated in Beijing, People s Republic of China from August 8 to August
  • The 2008 UEFA European Football Championship or the Euro 2008 was the 13th UEFA European Championships. It was hosted by Austria and Switzerland during
  • Below is a list of movies released in 2008 ordered by release date. Chadwick Boseman The Express Jessica Chastain Jolene Felicity Jones Flashbacks
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  • Bolt is a 2008 American computer - animated action - adventure comedy - drama movie, produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios and distributed by Walt Disney
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  • The 2008 Mumbai attacks were carried out at seven places across Mumbai, India, on 26th November 2008 175 people were killed and 291 were injured in these