1282 Mar 31, The great massacre
of the French in Sicily, "The Sicilian Vespers," came to an end.
[see Aug 31,1303]
1389 Mar 31, Everhard
Tserclaes, sheriff of Brussels, was murdered.
1492 Mar 31, King Ferdinand and
Queen Isabella of Spain issued an edict expelling Jews from Spanish
soil, except those willing to convert to Christianity. In 2002
Claudia Roden authored “The Ornament of the World," a collection of
stories of Sephardic Jews in Spain from 750 to 1492. A Jewish text
later known as the Sarajevo Haggadah was carried by a refugee to
Italy and later to Bosnia. [see Mar 30]
(AP, 3/30/97)(WSJ, 4/26/02, p.W12)(SSFC, 12/8/02,
1499 Mar 31, Pius IV
(Gianangelo de' Medici), Italian lawyer, pope (1559-65), was born.
1547 Mar 31, Francis I, King of
France (1515-1547), died and was succeeded by his son Henry II, who
was dominated by his mistress, Diane de Poitiers, during his 12 year
(TL-MB, 1988, p.17)(HN, 3/31/99)
1578 Mar 31, Juan de Escobedo,
secretary of Spanish land guardian Don Juan, was murdered.
1596 Mar 31, Rene Descartes
(d.1650), French philosopher, was born in La Haye, France. He
proposed a numerical index that represented fundamental notions. He
made consciousness the defining feature of the self. Descartes died
in Sweden. In 1997 Paul Strathern published: “Descartes in 90
Minutes," and Keith Devlin published “Goodbye Descartes: The End of
Logic and the Search for a New Cosmology of the Mind." In 1998 the
French biography by Genevieve Rodis-Lewis was translated to English:
“Descartes: His Life and Thought."
(V.D.-H.K.p.203)(Wired, 8/96, p.86)(WSJ, 3/18/97,
p.A20)(AP, 3/30/97) (WSJ, 7/23/98, p.A14)(WSJ, 8/21/98, p.W13)
1621 Mar 31, Andrew Marvell,
English poet and politician, was born.
1631 Mar 31, John Donne
(b.1572), British metaphysical poet, died in London. In 2006 John
Stubbs authored “Donne: The Reformed Soul."
(www.luminarium.org/sevenlit/donne/donnebio.htm)(Econ, 9/9/06, p.79)
1657 Mar 31, English Humble
Petition offered Lord Protector Cromwell the crown.
1732 Mar 31, Joseph Haydn
(d.1809), Austrian composer who helped develop the classical style,
was born. In his career he composed 104 symphonies, 82 string
quartets and 60 piano sonatas. He also wrote some 175 baritone
pieces for his patron, the Hungarian prince Nickolaus Esterhazy, who
played the complex stringed instrument. The Canadian scholar David
Schroeder wrote: "Haydn and the Enlightenment."
(CFA, '96,Vol 179, p.42)(WUD, 1994, p.651)(WSJ,
8/26/97, p.A14)(HN, 3/31/98)
1745 Mar 31, Jews were expelled
1747 Mar 31, Johann Abraham
Peter Schulz, German composer (Moon has Risen), was born.
1776 Mar 31, Abigail Adams
wrote to her husband John that women were "determined to foment a
rebellion" if the new Declaration of Independence failed to
guarantee their rights.
1776 Mar 31, Captain Juan
Bautista de Anza and a crew that included such names as Castro,
Peralta, Bernal, Moraga, Alviso and Berryessa, among others, arrived
at the eastern side of the San Francisco Bay on a 5-day expedition
to explore the area.
(SFC, 12/5/11, p.A1)
1777 Mar 31, A young Abigail
Adams encouraged her husband John to give women voting privileges in
the new American government. She wrote to her husband on March 31,
1777, while he was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention: “I
desire you would remember the ladies and be more generous to them
than were your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the
hands of husbands. Remember all men would be tyrants if they
could. If particular care and attention are not paid to the ladies
we are determined to foment a rebellion, and will not hold ourselves
bound to obey any laws in which we have no voice or representation."
Twenty years later her husband was a candidate in America’s first
1779 Mar 31, Russia and Turkey
signed a treaty by which they promised to take no military action in
1790 Mar 31, In Paris, France,
Maximilien Robespierre was elected president of the Jacobin Club.
1796 Mar 31, Johann Wolfgang
von Goethe's "Egmont," premiered in Weimar.
1808 Mar 31, French created the
Kingdom of Westphalia and ordered Jews to adopt family names.
1809 Mar 31, Edward Fitzgerald,
American writer, was born. He is famous for writing "Rubaiyat of
1809 Mar 31, Nikolai V. Gogol
(d.1852), Ukrainian-born Russian writer, was born (NS) in
Sorochyntsi, Poltava Governorate (later Ukraine). Some sources give
April 1 as his birthday. His work included the play “The Inspector
General" (1836) and the novels “Taras Bulba" (1835) and “Dead
1809 Mar 31, Otto Jonas
Lindblad, composer, was born.
1809 May 31, Composer Franz
Joseph Haydn died in Vienna, Austria on his 77th birthday. When
Napoleon’s armies marched into Vienna, the commanding general posted
guards in front of Haydn’s house to protect Haydn from trouble, and
a young officer was sent to sing for the old man.
(AP, 5/31/97)(WSJ, 1/8/98, p.A7)
1811 Mar 31, Robert Wilhelm
Eberhard von Bunsen, German inventor of the Bunsen burner, was born.
1814 Mar 31, Forces allied
against Napoleon captured Paris.
1831 Mar 31, Archibald Scott,
Scottish chemist, was born.
1831 Mar 31, Quebec and
Montreal were incorporated.
1836 Mar 31, The first monthly
installment of The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens was published
1837 Mar 31, John Constable
(60), English painter, water colors painter, died. His work included
some 100 studies of the sky done between 1821-1822. In 2009 Martin
Gayford authored “Constable in Love: Love, Landscape, Money and the
Making of a Great Painter."
(WSJ, 6/9/04, p.D8)(Econ, 3/21/09,
1841 Mar 31, 1st performance of
Robert Schumann's 1st Symphony in B.
1847 Mar 31, Jarolslaw
Zielinski, composer, was born.
1850 Mar 31, The US population
hit 23,191,876, with the Black population at 3,638,808 (15.7%).
1850 Mar 31, John Calhoun
(b.1782), US vice-president (1825-1832), died while a senator from
South Carolina. He was elected vice president under two presidents,
John Quincy Adams in 1824 and Andrew Jackson in 1828.
(WUD, 1994 p.210)(HNQ, 8/19/99)(MC, 3/31/02)
1854 Mar 31, Sir Dugald Clerk,
inventor of the two-stroke motorcycle engine, was born.
1854 Mar 31, Chief Shogun
Iyesada, following negotiations with Commodore Perry, approved the
Treaty of Kanagawa on behalf of Emperor Osahito. This forced Japan
to open its ports to foreign trade.
(Jap. Enc., BLDM, p. 215)(ON, 11/04, p.12)
1855 Mar 31, Charlotte Bronte
(b.1816), English author (Jane Eyre), died. In 1994 Lyndall Gordon
authored “Charlotte Bronte: A Passionate Life." In 2015 Clare Harmon
authored “Charlotte Bronte: A Life."
1858 Mar 31, Norddeutscher
Lloyd Bremen launched the SS New York, a passenger cargo vessel. It
was sold to Edward Bates of Liverpool in 1874 and later wrecked near
Staten Island. In 1994 Edwin Drechsel (1914-2006) later authored a
2-volume history of the North German shipping line.
1862 Mar 31, Skirmishing
between Rebels and Union forces took place at Island 10 on the
1863 Mar 31, Battle of Grand
Gulf, MS & Dinwiddie Court House, VA.
1865 Mar 31, Battle of Boydton,
VA (White Oaks Roads, Dinwiddie Court House).
1865 Mar 31, Gen. Pickett moved
to 5 Forks, abandoning the defense of Petersburg.
1872 Mar 31, Sergei Pavlovich
Diaghilev, dance master (Imperial Ballet), was born in Russia. [see
1878 Mar 31, Jack Johnson,
first Africa-American boxer to become the world heavyweight champion
(1908-1915), was born.
(HN, 3/31/99)(MC, 3/31/02)
1880 Mar 31, Wabash, Ind.,
became the first town completely illuminated by electrical lighting.
(AP, 3/31/97)(HN, 3/31/98)
1880 Mar 31, Henryk Wieniawski
(44), Polish violist, composer, died.
1883 Mar 31, 1st performance of
Cesar Franck's "Le Chasseur Maudit."
1885 Mar 31, Madame Blavatsky
was hoisted in an invalid chair onto a steamer in the Madras harbor
of India and departed for London. In England she wrote “The Secret
Doctrine" and had as guests to her salon William Butler Yeats, Annie
Besant and the young Mohandas K. Gandhi.
(Smith., 5/95, p.127)
1885 Mar 31, Franz Wilhelm Abt
(65), German composer, choir conductor, died.
1886 Mar 31, Giovanni Rossi
(57), composer, died.
1887 Mar 31, John Godfrey Saxe
(b.1816), American poet, died. In 1969 he was quoted saying: “Laws,
like sausages, cease to inspire respect in proportion as we know how
they are made." His poems included “The Blind Men and the Elephant"
1889 Mar 31, French engineer
Gustave Eiffel unfurled the French tricolor from atop the Eiffel
Tower, officially marking its completion. Constructed of 7,000 tons
of iron and steel, the 984-foot structure was designed by Alexandre
Gustave Eiffel for the Paris Exhibition of 1889, commemorating the
centennial of the French Revolution. The price for the Eiffel Tower
was more than $1 million, but fees for the year 1889 alone nearly
recouped the cost. Fifty-five years later, plans by Hitler to leave
the tower and much of Paris a smoking ruin were foiled by an
unlikely hero. After the Paris World Fair a church designed by
Alexandre Gustave Eiffel was dismantled and shipped to Santa Rosalia
in Baja, Mexico.
(SFEC, 10/20/96, Par, p.23)(SFEC, 11/10/96,
p.T11)(HNPD, 3/31/99)(AP, 3/31/08)
1891 Mar 31, Erich Walter
Sternberg, composer, was born.
1893 Mar 31, Clemens Krauss,
conductor (Berlin State Orch-1937), was born in Vienna.
1895 Mar 31, Vardis A. Fisher,
US author (Darkness & Deep), was born.
1895 Mar 31, John Jay McCloy,
lawyer, banker (Sec of War 1941-45, High Commissioner for Germany,
pres Chase Manhattan), was born.
1903 Mar 31, New Zealand
aviator Richard Pearse flew a self-made, bamboo-framed, mono-winged
airplane in Waitohi.
(NW, 3/17/03, p.20)
1906 Mar 31, G.B. Shaw's German
version of "Caesar and Cleopatra," premiered in Berlin.
1907 Mar 31, Romanian Army put
down a Moldavian farmers' revolt.
1909 Mar 31, Gustav Mahler
conducted the NY Philharmonic for 1st time.
1913 Mar 31, John Pierpont
Morgan (b.1837), US banker, CEO (US Steel Corp), died in Rome,
Italy. His art collection was valued at $60m. In 1999 Jean Strouse
p.86)(WSJ, 8/4/07, p.P9)
1914 Mar 31, Octavio Paz,
Mexican diplomat and Nobel Prize-winning writer, was born.
1915 Mar 31, Henry Morgan,
comedian, radio performer, was born.
1916 Mar 31, General Pershing
and his army routed Pancho Villa's army in Mexico.
1916 Mar 31, In San Francisco
one Chinese man was killed and another fatally injured as police
raided the Wah Fat Social Club at 10 Ross Alley in Chinatown. Four
timbered doors were chopped down by police to gain entry.
(SSFC, 3/27/16, p.50)
1917 Mar 31, The United States
took possession of the Virgin Islands. The purchase from Denmark for
$25 million had been set up in 1916.
1918 Mar 31, Daylight Savings
Time went into effect throughout the U.S. for the first time.
1920 Mar 31, British parliament
accepted Irish "Home Rule" law.
1921 Mar 31, Great Britain
declared a state of emergency because of the thousands of coal
miners on strike.
1922 Mar 31, Richard Kiley,
actor (Man of La Mancha, Endless Love), was born in Chicago.
1923 Mar 31, The first U.S.
dance marathon, held in New York City, ended. Alma Cummings (32) set
a world record of 27 hours on her feet. 6 younger male partners
(AP, 3/31/98)(WSJ, 6/1/05, p.B1)
1923 Mar 31, French soldiers
fired on workers at Krupp factory in Essen; 13 died.
1924 Mar 31, Leo Buscaglia,
"Dr. Hug", psychologist (Love), was born in LA, Calif.
1926 Mar 31, Sydney Chaplin,
son of Charlie, actor (Adding Machine, Psycho Sisters), was born.
1926 Mar 31, John Fowles
(d.2005), English novelist, was born. His work included “The
Collector" (1963) and “The French Lieutenant's Woman" (1969).
(HN, 3/31/01)(SFC, 11/8/05, p.B5)
1927 Mar 31, Cesar Chavez
(d.1993), California union leader of agricultural workers (United
Farm Workers), was born in Yuma, Az.
(SFEC,10/19/97, p.C3)(SFC, 3/29/00, p.A3)(MC,
1927 Mar 31, William Daniels,
actor (Dr Mark Craig-St Elsewhere, 1776), was born in Brooklyn, NY.
1928 Mar 31, Gordie Howe, NHL
right wing (Detroit Redwings), was born in Floral, Sask., Canada.
1931 Mar 31, Knute Rockne (43),
football player, coach, died in a plane crash.
1932 Mar 31, Ford Motor Co.
publicly unveiled its V-8 engine.
1932 Mar 31, 150 wild swans
died in Niagara waterfall.
1933 Mar 31, Shirley Jones,
actress (Partridge Family, Elmer Gantry), was born in Smithton, Pa.
1933 Mar 31, Congress approved,
and President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed, the Emergency
Conservation Work Act (Reforestation Relief Act), which created the
Civilian Conservation Corps. The US unemployment rate reached 25%.
In its nine years of existence, the New Deal’s Civilian Conservation
Corps had a total of 2.9 million men aged 18 to 25 enrolled. The
program was designed to provide jobs for young men in the national
forests, conservation programs and national road construction.
Enacted as one of President Franklin Roosevelt’s first New Deal
programs, it lasted until World War II. At its high point in
September 1935, the CCC had 2,514 work camps across the U.S. with
502,000 men enrolled.
(SFEC, 5/2/99, Z1 p.1)(HNQ, 7/23/99)(AP,
3/31/08)(SSFC, 1/18/09, p.D6)
1933 Mar 31, German Republic
gave dictatorial power to Hitler.
1935 Mar 31, Herb Alpert,
bandleader, trumpeter (Tijuana Brass), CEO (A & M), was born.
1936 Mar 31, Marge Piercy, poet
and novelist, was born.
1939 Mar 31, Britain and France
agreed to support Poland if Germany threatened to invade. Seven
French islands were annexed by Japan.
1940 Mar 31, The New York
Municipal Airport, opened in October, 1939, was renamed La Guardia
airport, after the mayor, who had been a bomber pilot in World War I
and whose interest in aviation lasted throughout his lifetime,
barely a month after it opened.
1941 Mar 31, Germany began a
counter offensive in North Africa.
1943 Mar 31, The Rodgers and
Hammerstein musical "Oklahoma!" opened at the St. James Theatre on
Broadway. Celeste Holm sang the show-stopping number “I Cain’t Say
No." Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein hired Agnes de Mille for
the choreography. The original is only on documentary videotape and
the 1954 film was a "bloated mess."
(TMC, 1994, p.1943)(WSJ, 2/5/96, p.A-16)(AP,
3/30/97)(SFC, 7/16/12, p.C4)
1943 Mar 31, US Army Air Force
bombers attacked harbor facilities in the west of Rotterdam. A
combination of strong wind and overcast conditions also caused great
damage to the nearby residential areas, especially in the
Bospolder-Tussendijken District. The death toll rose to 401
casualties and around 16,500 people lost their homes.
1944 Mar 31, Hungary ordered
all Jews to wear yellow stars.
1945 Mar 31, The Tennessee
Williams play "The Glass Menagerie" premiered on Broadway.
1945 Mar 31, The U.S. and
Britain barred a Soviet supported provisional regime in Warsaw from
entering the U.N. meeting in San Francisco.
1945 Mar 31, US artillery
landed on Keise Shima and began firing on Okinawa.
1945 Mar 31, Sicherheitsdienst
murdered 10 political prisoners in Zutphen.
1948 Mar 31, David Eisenhower,
Eisenhower's grandson (married Julie Nixon), was born.
1948 Mar 31, Al Gore, Vice
President to President William J. Clinton (1993-2001), was born.
1948 Mar 31, Rhea Perlman,
actress (Zena-Taxi, Carla-Cheers), was born in Brooklyn.
1948 Mar 31, Congress passed a
$6.2 billion foreign aid bill, the Marshall Aid Act, to rehabilitate
(HN, 3/31/98)(MC, 3/31/02)
1948 Mar 31, The Soviet Union
in Germany began controlling the Western trains headed toward
1949 Mar 31, Newfoundland,
later called Newfoundland and Labrador, left the UK and entered
confederation as Canada's 10th province. In 1998 Wayne Johnston
authored “The Colony of Unrequited Dreams," a novel about
postconfederation Newfoundland and its 1st premier, Joe Smallwood.
In 2000 Johnston authored “Baltimore’s Mansion," a personal memoir
(SFEC, 6/25/00, BR p.6)(AP, 3/31/08)
1949 Mar 31, Churchill declared
that the A-bomb was the only thing that kept the USSR from taking
1953 Mar 31, Stanley Kubrick's
first feature film, a war drama titled "Fear and Desire," premiered
in New York.
1953 Mar 31, Department of
Health, Education and Welfare was established.
1953 Mar 31, UN Security
Council nominated Dag Hammarskjold secretary-general.
1954 Mar 31, Moscow offered to
join NATO on the condition that the West join the Soviet European
1954 Mar 31, The siege of Dien
Bien Phu, the last French outpost in Vietnam, began after the Viet
Minh realized it could not be taken by direct assault.
1955 Mar 31, US Assay Office in
Seattle, Washington, closed.
1957 Mar 31, The original
version of Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Cinderella," starring Julie
Andrews, aired live in color on CBS. The show drew an estimated
record TV audience of 107 million. Kaye Ballard and Alice Ghostley
played the step-sisters.
(AP, 3/31/07)(SFC, 1/25/19, p.C4)
1958 Mar 31, US Navy formed the
atomic sub division.
1958 Mar 31, Moscow declared a
halt on all atomic tests and asked other nations to follow.
1960 Mar 31, The South African
government declared a state of emergency after demonstrations led to
the deaths of more than 50 Africans.
1960 Mar 31, Joseph Haas (81),
German opera composer (Totenmesse), died.
1962 Mar 31, Cesar Chavez
(d.1993) founded the United Farm Workers Union on his birthday.
(SSFC, 4/7/02, p.A14)
1963 Mar 31, LA ended streetcar
service after 90 years.
1966 Mar 31, An estimated
200,000 anti-war demonstrators marched in New York City. 25,000 anti
war demonstrators marched in NYC.
(HN, 3/31/98)(SFEC, 11/28/99, p.A28)(MC, 3/31/02)
1966 Mar 31, Labour Party won
British parliamentary election.
1967 Mar 31, President Lyndon
Johnson signed the Consular Treaty, the first bi-lateral pact with
the Soviet Union since the Bolshevik Revolution.
1968 Mar 31, Pres. Johnson
announced that he would not run for re-election and declared a
partial bombing halt in Vietnam. The stock market soared. Citing
national divisions over the war in Vietnam, Johnson declares that "I
shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party
for another term as your president."
(WUD, 1994, p.1687)(TMC, 1994, p.1968)(SFC,
8/18/96, Z1 p.4)(AP, 3/31/97)(MC, 3/31/02)
1970 Mar 31, The U.S. forces in
Vietnam downed a MIG-21, the first since September 1968.
1970 Mar 31, Semjon Timoshenko
(75), Russian marshal, inspector-general (WW II), died.
1971 Mar 31, US Lt. William
Calley (b.1943) was sentenced to life for the My Lai Massacre.
1975 Mar 31, The TV show
Gunsmoke, which premiered in 1955, aired its last original episode.
The show was canceled in September.
1975 Mar 31, In Tajikistan the
first pouring of aluminum took place at the new state-run aluminum
smelting plant at Tursunzadeh. By 2013 TALCO produced hundreds of
millions of dollars in profits that were routed to a shell company
in the British Virgin Islands".
1976 Mar 31, The New Jersey
Supreme Court allowed the removal of the respirator that assisted
Karen Ann Quinlan, who had been comatose since Apr 15, 1975.
Quinlan, who remained comatose, died Jul 11, 1985.
(SFC, 12/12/96, p.C8)(AP, 3/30/97)
1979 Mar 31, The Arab League
suspended Egypt following its treaty with Israel.
1980 Mar 31, Pres. Carter
signed the Depository Institutions Deregulation And Monetary Control
Act, which deregulated interest rates.
1980 Mar 31, In Spain the first
session of the Basque parliament was held in Guernica.
1981 Mar 31, In the 1st Golden
Raspberry Awards the film “Can't Stop the Music" won as worst film
1981 Mar 31, In the 53rd
Academy Awards "Ordinary People," R. De Niro and Sissy Spacek won,
one day after the attempted assassination of Pres. Reagan. The
Awards were held at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.
1982 Mar 31, In California an
avalanche at the Alpine Meadows ski resort killed 7 people. In 2009
Jennifer Woodlief authored “A Wall of White: The True Story of
Heroism and Survival in the Face of a Deadly Avalanche."
(http://tinyurl.com/7gjkf)(SFC, 2/27/09, p.F4)
1982 Mar 31, In South Africa
Nelson Mandela and 3 others were transferred from Robben Island to
Pollsmoor Prison on the mainland. Mandela had spent 18 years on
1983 Mar 31, A 5.4 earthquake
hit the region of Popoyan, Colombia. It killed about 250 people and
left some 1,500 injured.
1986 Mar 31, English Hampton
Court palace was destroyed by fire and 1 person died.
1986 Mar 31, 167 people died
when a Mexicana Airlines Boeing 727 crashed in a remote mountainous
region of Mexico.
1987 Mar 31, Indiana Univ. won
the NCAA basketball finals with a last-second, corner shot by Keith
(WSJ, 4/4/03, p.B2)(http://tinyurl.com/rcskk)
1987 Mar 31, The judge in the
"Baby M" case in Hackensack, N.J., awarded custody of the girl born
under a surrogate-motherhood contract to her father, William Stern,
instead of the surrogate, Mary Beth Whitehead.
1988 Mar 31, The novel
"Beloved" by Toni Morrison was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for
fiction, while the Charlotte (N.C) Observer won the prize for public
service for its coverage of the Praise The Lord scandal.
1989 Mar 31, The FBI announced
it would conduct a criminal investigation into the massive oil spill
in Alaska's Prince William Sound.
1990 Mar 31, Soviet President
Mikhail S. Gorbachev warned the defiant Baltic republic of Lithuania
to annul its declaration of independence or face "grave
1990 Mar 31, Hundreds of people
were injured in rioting in London over Britain's so-called "poll
tax." The poll-tax disturbances helped to bring down PM Margaret
(AP, 3/31/00)(Econ, 3/8/08, p.66)
1991 Mar 31, Albania offered a
multi-party election for the first time in 50 years. The Labor Party
won over 67 percent of votes, while the Democratic Party won around
30 percent. Communists won Albania’s first multiparty elections, but
democratic opponents scored victories in major cities.
(HN, 3/31/98)(www, Albania, 1998)(AP, 3/31/01)
1991 Mar 31, Voters in the
Soviet republic of Georgia overwhelmingly endorsed independence.
1991 Mar 31, The Warsaw Pact
spent the last day of its existence as a military alliance.
1992 Mar 31, The Battleship USS
Missouri was decommissioned. This was the ship on which Japan signed
its WWII surrender. In 1996 Paul Stillwell authored “Battleship
Missouri: An Illustrated History."
1992 Mar 31, The U.N. Security
Council voted to ban flights and arms sales to Libya, branding it a
terrorist state for shielding six men accused of blowing up Pan Am
Flight 103 and a French airliner.
1993 Mar 31, Actor Brandon Lee
(28) was killed during the filming of a movie in Wilmington, N.C.,
by a prop gun that fired part of a dummy bullet instead of a blank.
1993 Mar 31, "Star Dust"
lyricist Mitchell Parish died in New York City at age 92.
1993 Mar 31, The U.N. Security
Council increased international pressure on Bosnian Serbs,
authorizing NATO warplanes to shoot down aircraft that violated a
ban on flights over Bosnia.
1994 Mar 31, The PLO and Israel
agreed to resume talks on Palestinian autonomy, more than a month
after the Hebron mosque massacre.
1995 Mar 31, US baseball
players agreed to end their 232-day strike after a judge granted a
preliminary injunction against club owners.
1995 Mar 31, President Clinton
briefly visited Haiti, where he declared the U.S. mission to restore
democracy there a "remarkable success."
1995 Mar 31, Mexican-American
singer Selena, 23, was shot to death in Corpus Christi, Texas, by
the founder of her fan club. Yolanda Saldivar was convicted of
murder and sentenced to life in prison.
1995 Mar 31, Fred Cuny
(b.1944), American disaster relief specialist, disappeared in
Chechnya and was never found. He used his training in engineering to
do humanitarian work and worked in countries such as Biafra,
Guatemala, Ethiopia, Iraq, Somalia, and Bosnia. Cuny (50), an envoy
for George Soros' Open Society Institute, was shot and killed by
Chechen gunmen. In 1999 Scott Anderson published "The Man Who Tried
to Save the World: The Dangerous Life and Mysterious Disappearance
of Fred Cuny."
(http://www.onlineethics.org/cms/14193.aspx)(SFEC, 6/6/99, BR p.1)
1996 Mar 31, Pres. Clinton and
Monica Lewinsky resumed their sexual relationship.
(SFC, 9/12/98, p.A13)
1996 Mar 31 Russian President
Boris Yeltsin announced a halt to combat operations in Chechnya,
limited troop withdrawals and a willingness to hold indirect talks
with the rebels' leader.
1997 Mar 31, In the US men’s
NCAA Basketball finals Arizona beat Kentucky 84-79 in overtime.
(SFC, 4/1/97, p.A1)
1997 Mar 31, The Supreme Court
ruled that the government can force cable television systems to
carry local broadcast stations.
1997 Mar 31, Jury selection
began in Denver in the trial of accused Oklahoma City bomber Timothy
1997 Mar 31, It was reported
from Los Angeles that Yasuyoshi Kato was caught after having
embezzled 85-95 [$62 mil] million from Day-Lee Foods, a Japanese
firm for which he worked as an accountant [chief financial officer].
He was sentenced to 5 years in prison.
(SFC, 3/31/97, p.A15)(SFC, 10/7/97, p.A14)
1997 Mar 31, Scientists
announced the first artificial human chromosomes that work properly
inside living cells.
(SFC, 4/1/97, p.A1)
1997 Mar 31, In Spain a
passenger train north of Pamplona derailed and killed at least 22
and injured some 87 people.
(WSJ, 4/1/97, p.A1)
1998 Mar 31, For the first time
in history, the Clinton administration released a detailed financial
statement for the federal government showing its assets and
1998 Mar 31, Hon-Ming Chen,
Taiwanese leader of a spiritual sect in Garland, Texas, was to meet
God at 10 AM.
(SFC, 3/23/98, p.A3)
1998 Mar 31, Starcraft, a
military science fiction real-time strategy video game, was released
in South Korea. It was developed by Blizzard Entertainment, a
1998 Mar 31, Former New York
Congresswoman Bella Abzug died at age 77.
1998 Mar 31, In Egypt a
sweeping press ban forbade publishing houses from printing in
tax-free zones. This amounted to a temporary de facto ban for over
50 publications that printed in the Nasser City tax-free zone
outside of Cairo.
(SFC, 5/9/98, p.A10)
1998 Mar 31, The EU set this
date for membership talks with Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic,
Slovenia, Estonia and Cyprus. Preliminary talks were also set with
Lithuania, Latvia, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria.
1998 Mar 31, In Lille, France,
an 18-year-old boy was shot dead by a fellow student in front of his
classmates and teacher.
(SFC, 4/22/98, p.A10)
1998 Mar 31, The UN Security
Council imposed a new arms embargo on Yugoslavia to press Milosevic
to grant ethnic Albanians concessions in Kosovo.
(SFC, 4/1/98, p.A8)(AP, 3/31/99)
1998 Mar 31, In Cambodia
government soldiers made a major offensive to destroy the remnants
of the Khmer Rouge guerrillas, which was disintegrating due to
defections and internal fighting.
(SFC, 4/1/98, p.A8)
1998 Mar 31, In Lebanon a
roadside bomb in the Israeli security zone killed 6 construction
workers in their pickup truck near Kaoukaba.
(SFC, 4/1/98, p.A10)
1998 Mar 31, It was reported
that in Thailand’s Mae Hong Son province, women of the Padaung tribe
of Burma were attracting tourists with their necks elongated by
wearing brass coils. They began fleeing Burma’s Kayah state over a
(SFC, 3/31/98, p.B4)
1999 Mar 31, A federal judge
was expected to approve a settlement by black United Parcel Service
(UPS) workers for over $8 million for racial discrimination.
(SFEC, 3/7/99, p.D2)
1999 Mar 31, Four New York City
police officers were charged with murder for killing Amadou Diallo,
an unarmed African immigrant, in a hail of bullets. They were
acquitted in Feb 2000.
1999 Mar 31, Three peacekeeping
US soldiers were captured by Serb forces near the Yugoslav-Macedonia
border. Sgt. James Stone (25), Spec. Steven Gonzales (21) and Sgt.
Andrew Ramirez (24) were shown on Serbian TV and were released more
than a month later. Azen Syla, founder of the KLA, said that his
guerrilla supply lines from Albania were cut off when the bombing
began. Yugoslav soldiers herded ethnic Albanians onto trains bound
for the Macedonian border as NATO bombing continued for the 8th day.
(SFC, 4/1/99, p.A1,12)(SFC, 4/2/99, p.A1)(AP,
1999 Mar 31, NATO bombs
destroyed the Sloboda household utilities plant in Cacak, Serbia. It
had employed some 5,000 people. Allied leaders said they would bomb
government buildings in Belgrade.
(SFC, 4/1/99, p.A14)(WSJ, 4/1/99, p.A1)
1999 Mar 31, In the village of
Dzakovo, Kosovo, a witness reported the Serbian paramilitary forces
invade a mosque during morning prayers and killed some 80 people.
(SFC, 4/6/99, p.A8)
1999 Mar 31, On Serbian TV
Ibrahim Rugova appealed for an end to NATO bombings. He had recently
been quoted by a German magazine that chaos would result if NATO
does not send in ground troops immediately. Serbs put Rugova under
house arrest and ordered him to appear on TV.
(SFC, 4/2/99, p.A15)(SFC, 4/17/99, p.A9)
1999 Mar 31, In England the
House of Lords passed a bill that stripped aristocrats with
inherited seats from voting in the upper chamber of Parliament.
(SFC, 4/1/99, p.C2)
1999 Mar 31, In Zambia the high
court declared former leader Kenneth Kaunda, born to Malawian
missionaries, a non-citizen.
(WSJ, 4/1/99, p.A1)
2000 Mar 31, The UN Security
Council decided to let Iraq spend more money to repair its oil
industry, an investment intended to boost the amount of food and
medicine Baghdad could buy through the UN humanitarian program.
(SFC, 4/1/00, p.A12)(AP, 3/31/01)
2000 Mar 31, In Russia Pres.
Putin called for a quick ratification of the START II nuclear arms
reduction treaty and deeper cuts in nuclear missiles.
(SFC, 4/1/00, p.A12)
2000 Mar 31, In Uganda police
revised the number of deaths linked to the doomsday cult to 924.
(SFC, 4/1/00, p.A1)
2001 Mar 31, Pres. Blaise
Compaore asked for forgiveness for abuses over his 13-year rule as
part of Burkina Faso’s 1st “National Pardon Day."
(SSFC, 4/1/01, p.C10)
2001 Mar 31, In Macedonia
rebels engaged government troops in a firefight.
(SSFC, 4/1/01, p.C5)
2001 Mar 31, In the Netherlands
legislation enacted in 2000 to legalize gay marriages went into
effect at midnight. This made Netherlands the first country to
legalize same-sex marriages.
(SFC, 3/31/01, p.A10)(SSFC, 8/4/13, p.A2)
2001 Mar 31, In Pakistan a
stampede at a shrine in Pakbattan Sharif left 40 dead as thousands
rushed for the “paradise door."
(WSJ, 4/2/01, p.A1)
2001 Mar 31, In Russia some
20,000 people gathered in Pushkin Square to defend the NTV network
from the government’s 10-month financial and legal campaign against
(SSFC, 4/1/01, p.C2)
2001 Mar 31, In Serbia
commandos stormed the residence of Slobodan Milosevic and attempted
to arrest him as the US deadline for cooperation with the UN War
Crimes tribunal approached. But a defiant Milosevic rejected a
warrant, reportedly telling police he wouldn't "go to jail alive."
He was taken into custody the next day.
(SFC, 3/31/01, p.A1)(AP, 3/31/02)
2001 Mar 31, In Taiwan the
Dalai Lama arrived for a spiritual visit.
(SFC, 4/2/01, p.A9)
2001 Mar 31, In Turkey
thousands rallied in major cities to protest a government economic
recovery plan backed by the IMF.
(SSFC, 4/1/01, p.C10)
2002 Mar 31, Connecticut beat
Oklahoma 82-70 to conclude its second unbeaten season with a third
women's national championship.
2002 Mar 31, Barry Took (73),
British comedian and comic writer, died. He helped produce “Monty
Python’s Flying Circus." His autobiography was titled “A Point of
(SFC, 4/1/02, p.B5)
2002 Mar 31, On Australia’s
Norfolk Island Glenn McNeill (24) of New Zealand hit Janelle Patton
(29) with his car and later stabbed her "just to make sure she was
dead." McNeill was arrested in 2006 based on DNA evidence. Patton
suffered 64 separate injuries including a fractured skull and
numerous stab wounds in the attack In 2007 McNeill told police he
had been smoking cannabis when he hit Patton. On Mar 9 a jury
convicted McNeill of murder. On July 25 he was sentenced to 24 years
(AP, 8/12/02)(Econ, 7/10/04, p.38)(Reuters,
2002 Mar 31, Men in the Czech
Republic chased female relatives and friends for the traditional
Easter leg thwacking.
(WSJ, 3/28/02, p.A1)
2002 Mar 31, In France an arson
attacked destroyed Marseille’s Or Aviv temple. It was the 3rd
synagogue attack over the Passover weekend.
(SFC, 4/2/02, p.A8)
2002 Mar 31, Israeli forces
entered Qalqilya and Bethlehem. 2 Palestinians were killed after
they fired on Israeli soldiers. Some 40 European and American peace
activists joined Yasser Arafat. Israeli PM Ariel Sharon vowed to
smash Palestinian militants in a broadcast speech that came the same
day as a suicide bombing in Haifa that killed 15 Israelis. In 2009
Shimon Shiran died of wounds suffered in the bombing that also
killed his daughter Adi (17).
(SFC, 4/1/02, p.A1,10)(AP, 3/31/07)(AP, 4/12/09)
2002 cMar 31, In Madagascar a
bridge linking the capital to a southern port was blown up.
(WSJ, 4/1/02, p.A1)
2002 Mar 31, Serbia’s
government, faced with a midnight suspension of US aid, issued
arrest warrants against 4 former Milosevic associates.
(SFC, 4/1/02, p.A6)
2002 Mar 31, In Taiwan a
6.8-7.1 earthquake hit and 5 construction workers were killed in
Taipei when 2 construction cranes fell from the 60th floor of a new
building projected to be the tallest in the city. Taipei 101 reached
1,679 feet on completion and claimed to be have the highest
structural top, tallest roof and highest occupied floor.
(SFC, 4/1/02, p.A7)(WSJ, 4/1/02, p.A1)(SSFC,
2002 Mar 31, In Ukraine
elections the pro-Western Our Ukraine led by former PM Viktor
Yuschenko led with 23%. The Communist Party had 20%. Pres.
Kuchma’s United Ukraine had 13% and expected 119 seats in
parliament. The parties provide half the 450 sets of the parliament,
known as the Verkhovna Rada. Direct elections decide the other half.
(SFC, 4/1/02, p.A6)(SFC, 4/2/02, p.A6)(SFC,
2002 Mar 31, Pope John Paul II
used his Easter message to call for an end to violence in the Holy
2003 Mar 31, In the 13th day of
Operation Iraqi Freedom US-led troops fought pitched battles with
Saddam Hussein's Republican Guard within 50 miles of the capital.
B-1, B-2 and B-52 bombers struck communication and command centers
in Baghdad, and cruise missiles set Iraq's Information Ministry
ablaze. Casualties from the war to date US total: 40 dead, 7
captured, 18 missing; British total: 25 dead. Of 8,000 precision
bombs dropped since the war began, 3,000 fell in the last 3 days.
Port operations at Umm Qasr looked to be delayed for weeks.
(AP, 3/31/03)(WSJ, 4/1/03, p.A1)
2003 Mar 31, US troops between
Karbala and Najaf shot and killed 10 Iraqi civilians including women
and children, when the driver of a van failed to stop at a
checkpoint. The Pentagon reported 7 killed.
(AP, 4/1/03)(SFC, 4/1/03, p.A1)
2003 Mar 31, NBC said it
severed its relations with reporter Peter Arnett after he told Iraqi
television that the US war plan against Saddam Hussein had failed.
Arnett was quickly hired by London's Daily Mirror.
(AP, 3/31/03)(WSJ, 4/1/03, p.B1)
2003 Mar 31, The DJIA fell 153
(SFC, 4/1/03, p.C1)
2003 Mar 31, Harold Scott
MacDonald Coxeter (b.1907), British-born mathematician, died. He
pioneered the study of higher-dimensional shapes called polytopes.
In 2006 Siobhan Roberts authored “King of Infinite Space."
2003 Mar 31, Britain and the US
signed a new Extradition Treaty.
2003 Mar 31, In Bolivia rescue
officials struggled to reach victims buried by a landslide that
roared through Chima, a gold-mining town in Bolivia's tropical
lowlands, killing an estimated 300-400 people.
(AP, 4/1/03)(SFC, 4/1/03, p.A8)(AP, 4/2/03)
2003 Mar 31, Hong Kong
authorities quarantined more than 200 other residents in an
apartment block in an effort to contain the SARS virus.
2003 Mar 31, In eastern
Indonesia mudslides triggered by flash floods on Flores Island
killed 48 people with 28 reported missing.
(AP, 4/2/03)(AP, 4/5/03)
2003 Mar 31, In Tehran, Iran, a
pickup truck with extra fuel crashed into the British Embassy in an
apparent suicide attack. Police called it an accident.
(SFC, 4/1/03, p.A3)
2003 Mar 31, In Macedonia the
EU began its first military operation by taking over peacekeeping
duties from NATO.
2003 Mar 31, In southern
Pakistan gunmen in paramilitary uniforms shot dead 12 people and
wounded 26 others in an attack linked to a tribal feud.
2004 Mar 31, Air America Radio
went live in 3 of largest US markets with a left-leaning,
round-the-clock, talk format featuring Al Franken and Janeane
Garofalo. Air America was conceived by Anita and Sheldon Drobny of
Chicago. The idea was purchased by Guam entrepreneurs Evan M. Cohen
and Rex Sorensen, who resigned May 5.
(SFC, 3/31/04, p.C1)(WSJ, 6/21/04, p.A1)
2004 Mar 31, The US Navy closed
Naval Station Roosevelt Roads, its last base in Puerto Rico. It was
transferred to a special naval agency that will coordinate the
closing process. The base had been used for 6 decades to keep watch
over the Caribbean.
(AP, 1/6/04)(AP, 4/2/04)
2004 Mar 31, In Fallujah, Iraq,
jubilant residents dragged the charred corpses of 4 American private
security guards, from Blackwater Security Consulting, through the
streets and hanged them from a bridge spanning the Euphrates River.
5 American soldiers died in a roadside bombing nearby.
(AP, 3/31/04)(SFC, 4/1/04, p.A1)(SFC, 4/2/04,
2004 Mar 31, Lithuania's
highest court ruled that President Rolandas Paksas violated the
constitution by arranging citizenship for a businessman with alleged
mob ties, a verdict that will likely set the stage for an
2004 Mar 31, The International
Court of Justice ruled that the United States violated the rights of
51 Mexicans on death row and ordered their cases be reviewed.
2004 Mar 31, OPEC voted to cut
oil production by 4.1%.
(SFC, 4/1/04, p.C1)
2004 Mar 31, The US suspended
$26 million in aid to Serbia for refusal to give up war crimes
(WSJ, 4/1/04, p.A1)
2004 Mar 31, In Sudan security
police detained Hassan Turabi, the leading Islamic opposition
leader, 3 days after members of his party were accused of conspiring
to topple the government.
2005 Mar 31, A US presidential
commission reported that US intelligence agencies were dead wrong in
their prewar assessment of Iraq’s nuclear, biological and chemical
(SFC, 4/1/05, p.A1)
2005 Mar 31, A US Commerce
Dept. study on Internet traffic, ordered in 1998, was published
under the title “Signposts in Cyberspace."
(SFC, 4/1/05, p.C3)
2005 Mar 31, The World Bank
confirmed Paul Wolfowitz as its new president.
(WSJ, 4/1/05, p.A1)
2005 Mar 31, South Carolina
defeated Saint Joseph's, 60-57, in the NIT championship game.
2005 Mar 31, Terri Schiavo
(41), the severely brain-damaged woman who spent 15 years connected
to a feeding tube in an epic legal and medical battle that went all
the way to the White House and Congress, died in Florida, 13 days
after the tube was removed.
(AP, 3/31/05)(SFC, 4/1/05, p.A1)
2005 Mar 31, Frank Perdue,
businessman, died in Salisbury, Maryland. He transformed his
father’s backyard egg business into one of the nation's largest
poultry processors using the folksy slogan, "It takes a tough man to
make a tender chicken."
(AP, 4/1/05)(SFC, 4/2/05, p.B5)
2005 Mar 31, A US C-130
airplane crashed near the remote village of Rovie and all 9
Americans onboard were killed in mountainous southern Albania during
a joint exercise.
2005 Mar 31, It was reported
that Shirin Gul (39), an Afghan housewife, stood accused with her
lover and son (18) of murdering 27 men over the last 4 years in
order to sell their cars across the border in Pakistan.
(SFC, 3/31/05, p.A3)
2005 Mar 31, In Brazil a
massacre in Nova Iguacu, outside of Rio, left 29 people dead. The
next day state officials said they might have been carried out by
police incensed by investigations of brutality and corruption by
"bad" cops. In 2006 a court convicted Carlos Jorge Carvalho (32) a
state police officer, of taking part in the Baixada massacre. In
2009 ex-officer Julio Cesar de Paula was sentenced to 480 years in
prison and ex-officer Marcos Siqueira Costa to 543 years for
homicide and belonging to a criminal organization. The length of the
sentences was largely symbolic because under Brazilian law no one
can serve more than 30 years in prison.
(AP, 4/1/05)(SFC, 6/24/05, p.A16)(AP,
2005 Mar 31, Alberta repaid the
last of its debt and became Canada’s only borrowing-free province.
2005 Mar 31, The president of
Ecuador's Supreme Court annulled corruption charges against former
President Abdala Bucaram, paving the way for his possible return
from political asylum in Panama.
2005 Mar 31, The EU head office
said it will seek to impose additional sanctions of up to 15 percent
on US products to punish Washington for failing to repeal an
antidumping law ruled illegal by the World Trade Organization.
2005 Mar 31, Guyana police
found American missionaries Richard Hicks (42) and his wife Charlene
Hicks (58) slain at a farm they rented in southwestern Guyana near
the border with Brazil. In 2008 Guyana police issued arrest warrants
for two Brazilians accused of the killings. Peter Marare and Aleiman
Cassiano Eligenio, who were ranch hands on the couple's farm, faced
one count of murder each.
(AP, 4/1/05)(AP, 8/6/08)
2005 Mar 31, India's PM said
India and Mauritius are moving toward a free trade agreement to
boost the island's threatened trade portfolio and help India tap
into African markets.
2005 Mar 31, A suicide bomber
blew up his car south of Kirkuk, killing two Iraqi army soldiers and
three bystanders. A second car bomber attacked a joint U.S.-Iraqi
patrol in the center of Samarra, killing three people and injuring
more than a dozen others. Bombings and ambushes across Iraq left at
least a dozen Iraqis and one US soldier dead.
(AP, 3/31/05)(SFC, 4/1/05, p.A3)
2005 Mar 31, Rho on the
outskirts of Milan, Italy, inaugurated a trade fair over the site of
a polluted refinery closed in 1992. The site featured a new
structure by Massimilian Fuksas.
(Econ, 4/2/05, p.61)
2005 Mar 31, The World Bank
approved financing support for the controversial $1.2 billion Nam
Theun 2 dam in Laos.
(WSJ, 4/1/05, p.A8)
2005 Mar 31, Two Lithuanian
illusionists have begun an attempt to break the record for staying
inside a giant ice cube, set by US magician David Blaine in 2000
when he spent nearly 62 hours inside a block of ice.
2005 Mar 31, In Palestine
Mahmoud Abbas ordered a crackdown on Ramallah militants after a
group of gunmen fired at his compound in a sign of escalating
2005 Mar 31, A Rwandan Hutu
militia group, the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda,
denounced the Hutu-orchestrated 1994 genocide in the African country
and announced it was stopping its fighting in the region.
2005 Mar 31, Zimbabweans waited
in long lines to vote in parliamentary elections that President
Robert Mugabe hopes will prove the legitimacy of a regime.
2005 Mar 31, After weeks of
often bitter negotiations, the UN Security Council approved a
resolution to refer Sudanese war crimes suspects to the
International Criminal Court, agreeing to major concessions demanded
by United States.
2006 Mar 31, President Bush,
closing a three-nation NAFTA summit, defended requiring secure
documents from border-crossing Canadians and pushed Mexico to
prevent more of its people from illegally entering America.
2006 Mar 31, Auto parts maker
Delphi Corp. moved to void its U.S. labor contracts, cut up to 8,500
salaried workers and close or sell a third of its plants globally as
it attempts to slash costs and restructure in order to exit
2006 Mar 31, A provincial
governor said Afghan authorities have detained a border police
commander from the Achakzai tribe accused in the killings of 17
Pakistanis on March 21. Taliban insurgents raided several police
posts in Helmand province and six of the attackers were killed. A
suicide car-bomber was killed when he blew himself up as he tried to
ram his vehicle into an Afghan army convoy in Kandahar province.
(AP, 3/31/06)(Reuters, 3/31/06)(SSFC, 7/30/06,
2006 Mar 31, Australian police
arrested and charged three men with alleged links with a terrorist
organization after counter-terrorism teams swooped on Melbourne's
2006 Mar 31, In Austria
Gertraud Arzberger (33), who stuffed the bodies of two of her four
newborn infants in a freezer and entombed two others in plastic
buckets filled with cement, was convicted of three counts of murder
and sentenced to life imprisonment. Her live-in companion, Johannes
Genser (39), was convicted as an accessory and was sentenced to 15
2006 Mar 31, A lucky Belgian
won the jackpot of 75,753,123 euros (53 million pounds) in the
European lottery EuroMillions.
2006 Mar 31, Military and
police forces took control of Bolivia's major airports, one day
after hundreds of striking airline workers blocked runways and
disrupted flights to three airports.
2006 Mar 31, A plane carrying
19 people crashed in a mountainous region outside Rio de Janeiro,
killing all aboard. A small LET 410 twin-engine plane belonging to
the local Team airline went missing about 20 minutes after leaving
the city of Macae.
2006 Mar 31, In China Hu Jia, a
prominent AIDS activist, said he would sue the government for
improperly detaining him. Jia, released on March 28, accused Chinese
security forces of abducting and holding him for 41 days.
2006 Mar 31, French President
Jacques Chirac offered to soften a labor law that makes it easier to
fire young workers, but the student and labor leaders who have
organized nationwide strikes rejected his compromise and repeated
calls for the measure's repeal.
2006 Mar 31, Indonesia said it
has confirmed its 23rd bird flu fatality by tests carried out by the
World Health Organization (WHO). Local tests showed another patient
2006 Mar 31, The air force
chief of the elite Revolutionary Guards said Iran successfully
test-fired a new missile, the Fajir-3, with the ability to avoid
radar and hit several targets simultaneously.
(AP, 3/31/06)(SFC, 4/3/06, p.A3)
2006 Mar 31, In western Iran 3
strong earthquakes and several aftershocks reduced villages to
rubble, killing 70 people and injuring about 1,200 others.
(AP, 3/31/06)(AP, 3/31/07)
2006 Mar 31, In Iraq a mortar
round slammed into a street in northeastern Baghdad, killing three
women when shrapnel hit their home, and soldiers discovered the
bullet-riddled bodies of six men wearing handcuffs in western
Baghdad. Gunmen attacked a minibus carrying Shiites northeast of
Baghdad, killing six men and wounding one woman. At least 18 other
people were killed elsewhere, including three ice cream vendors and
a butcher, many in drive-by shootings.
(AP, 3/31/06)(AP, 4/1/06)
2006 Mar 31, Japan's opposition
party suffered a fresh humiliation when its leadership resigned en
masse over a fake e-mail scandal, handing PM Junichiro Koizumi an
uncontested grip on power in his last six months in office.
2006 Mar 31, Jordanian health
officials announced the kingdom's first human case of the bird flu
in a worker (31) believed to have contracted the deadly strain in
his home village in Egypt.
2006 Mar 31, Abu Yousef Abu
Quka, a top commander of a small militant Palestinian group, was
killed when his car mysteriously exploded in flames. A shootout
between rival Palestinian factions erupted shortly after the blast.
2006 Mar 31, A Portuguese court
convicted 96 people, including 81 police officers, in a corruption
case involving bribes for dismissed traffic fines.
2006 Mar 31, Prosecutors in
Warsaw filed charges against Poland's last communist leader, Gen.
Wojciech Jaruzelski, in connection with his imposition of martial
law in 1981 as the Soviet-backed regime tried to crush the
Solidarity pro-democracy movement.
2006 Mar 31, The EU gave Serbia
an extra month to hand over genocide suspect Ratko Mladic or face
suspension of its talks on closer EU ties, after being reassured of
progress in the manhunt.
2006 Mar 31, In Sri Lanka the
ruling coalition won an overwhelming victory in local elections,
according to results released by the government, a result seen as an
endorsement of the president's negotiations with Tamil Tiger rebels.
2006 Mar 31, Swiss prosecutors
said they have filed charges against 19 former top executives and
board members of the defunct Swissair for their part in the national
airline's 2001 bankruptcy.
2006 Mar 31, In Tonga Dr. Fred
Sevele agreed to serve as PM, making him the first commoner to lead
the government in living memory.
2006 Mar 31, In Turkey a bomb
hidden in a garbage can exploded near an Istanbul bus stop, killing
a street vendor and injuring 13 people. Fighting between Turkish
soldiers and Kurdish guerrillas killed a 3-year-old boy and brought
to 7 the number of fatalities in the 4th day of clashes.
(AP, 3/31/06)(SFC, 4/1/06, p.A5)
2007 Mar 31, President Bush
again came to the defense of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales,
under criticism for his role in the firing of federal prosecutors,
calling him "honorable and honest."
2007 Mar 31, President Bush
called for the release of 15 British sailors and marines held by
Iran, calling their capture by Tehran "inexcusable behavior." The
crew members were released on April 4.
2007 Mar 31, Nestle Purina
PetCare Co. said it was recalling all sizes and varieties of its
Alpo Prime Cuts in Gravy wet dog food with specific date codes.
Purina said a limited amount of the food contained a contaminated
wheat gluten from China.
2007 Mar 31, Berkeley Iceland
closed in Berkeley, Ca., after 66 years of operation.
(SSFC, 4/1/07, p.D1)
2007 Mar 31, Paul Watzlawick
(b.1921), Austrian-born pioneering psychotherapist, died in Palo
Alto, Ca. He held that people created their own misery by trying to
force self-defeating solutions to trivial problems of the ego. His
22 books included “The Situation Is Hopeless but not Serious: The
Pursuit of Unhappiness" (1993).
(SFC, 4/4/07, p.B7)
2007 Mar 31, Luanda, Angola,
built for half a million people was now home for at least 4 million,
many of whom fled there during the civil war.
(Econ, 3/31/07, p.58)
2007 Mar 31, It was reported
that Antarctica held about 90% of the world’s ice.
(Econ, 3/31/07, p.85)
2007 Mar 31, In Argentina
authorities said rising rivers due to 5 days of rain in three
provinces have forced some 38,000 people to flee their homes. The
floodwaters have claimed 7 lives.
2007 Mar 31, At least 22
Islamists were arrested in overnight raids as Bangladesh
strengthened security nationwide.
2007 Mar 31, In Brazil air
traffic controllers protesting working conditions ended their
one-day strike after the government agreed to their demands.
2007 Mar 31, Janjaweed
militiamen killed up to 400 people in the volatile eastern border
region near Sudan, leaving an "apocalyptic" scene of mass graves and
destruction. Chadian officials initially said 65 people had died,
but added that the toll was sure to rise.
2007 Mar 31, In Eritrea a ban
on female circumcision went into effect. A health survey by
Eritrea's government in 2002 found 62 percent of circumcised women
in the Red Sea state had the procedure done before their first
birthday. Less than one percent had been performed by trained health
2007 Mar 31, EU foreign
ministers backed an Arab peace initiative and agreed to engage with
ministers of the new Palestinian national unity government who are
not members of the Islamist Hamas movement.
2007 Mar 31, A parked car
exploded near a hospital in Baghdad's main Shiite district, the
deadliest in a series of bombings that killed at least nine people
and wounded dozens in Iraq.
2007 Mar 31, A report said
Malaysia's top anti-corruption official, who is facing a police
investigation into graft allegations against him, will not have his
2007 Mar 31, In southern
Nigeria gunmen kidnapped a British oil worker from an offshore oil
2007 Mar 31, Pakistan
successfully tested a short-range, nuclear-capable missile.
Avalanches struck two villages in a remote part of northwest
Pakistan, killing at least 29 people and leaving 14 others missing.
(AP, 3/31/07)(AP, 4/1/07)
2007 Mar 31, In Somalia
artillery fire and mortar shells rained down on Mogadishu as
government troops and their Ethiopian allies continued a major
offensive to quash a growing insurgency by Islamic militants. A
Ugandan soldier was killed by artillery fire in Mogadishu, marking
the first death among African Union peacekeepers deployed here.
(AP, 3/31/07)(AFP, 4/1/07)
2007 Mar 31, In western Sudan
at least 62 people were killed and 21 wounded in an attack on an
Arab tribe in the Darfur region.
2007 Mar 31, In Zimbabwe the
body of Edward Chikombo, an independent journalist, was found. He
had been missing since March 29. A lawyer for another reporter
arrested under sweeping media laws said he was assaulted and
tortured in custody. Chikombo had conveyed the picture of Morgan
Tsvangirai’s battered head (see March 24) to the wider world. On
April 6 Zimbabwe police opened a murder investigation into his
(AP, 4/6/07)(Econ, 10/9/10, p.36)
2008 Mar 31, The Bush
administration proposed the most far-ranging overhaul of the
financial regulatory system since the stock market crash of 1929 and
the ensuing Great Depression. Alphonso Jackson, the Bush
administration's top housing official, under criminal investigation
and intense pressure from Democratic critics, announced he is
2008 Mar 31, Gregg Bergersen
(51), a Pentagon weapons analyst, pleaded guilty to giving
classified information about US and Taiwanese military
communications systems to Tai Kuo, a New Orleans furniture salesman
working with the Chinese government.
(WSJ, 4/1/08, p.A2)
2008 Mar 31, The US investment
banking company Lehman Brothers sued the Japanese trading company
Marubeni, seeking to recover $350 million in financing it says was
2008 Mar 31, American director
Jules Dassin (96), whose Greek wife Melina Mercouri starred in his
hit movie "Never on Sunday" and six more of his films, died at an
2008 Mar 31, A clash in
southern Afghanistan killed a Danish soldier and wounded two others.
A separate attack on a NATO patrol killed two British troops. an
airstrike killed three men irrigating land close to a road in
Kandahar province. The men may have been mistaken for militants
planting roadside bombs. In Helmand province police arrested Mullah
Naqibullah, a senior Taliban commander who has escaped twice from
Afghan prisons. Naqibullah was nabbed during a clash that left three
(AP, 3/31/08)(AP, 4/1/08)
2008 Mar 31, Some of England's
most sacred soil was disturbed for the first time in more than four
decades as archaeologists worked to solve the enduring riddle of
Stonehenge: When and why was the prehistoric monument built?
2008 Mar 31, Chad's state radio
announced that the president has pardoned six French aid workers
convicted of kidnapping 103 children.
2008 Mar 31, Chinese President
Hu Jintao presided over the re-lighting of the Olympic torch in
Beijing, signaling the start of an around-the-world torch relay that
already has become a magnet for protesters.
2008 Mar 31, Chinese
authorities arrested suspects in four arson and murder cases
stemming from anti-government riots that engulfed the Tibetan
capital in mid-March.
2008 Mar 31, New President Raul
Castro's government has lifted a ban on Cubans staying at hotels
previously reserved for foreigners, ending another restriction that
had been especially irksome to citizens.
2008 Mar 31, In Iraq the
fortified Green Zone came under fresh attack, less than 24 hours
after anti-American Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr told his fighters
to stand down following a week of clashes with government forces.
Near Buhriz unknown gunmen in a car attacked a checkpoint manned by
US-backed Sunni fighters. Four of the fighters were killed.
2008 Mar 31, Jerusalem's city
hall has announced a plan to construct 600 new apartments in the
Pisgat Zeev neighborhood of east Jerusalem.
2008 Mar 31, Scientists in
Japan reported that they have designed artificial molecules that
when used with rats successfully reversed liver cirrhosis, a serious
chronic disease in humans that until now can only be cured by
2008 Mar 31, Malaysia's Islamic
opposition party delivered a protest note to the Netherlands'
embassy over the release of an anti-Islam movie by a maverick Dutch
lawmaker, while hard-line Muslims in neighboring Indonesia demanded
the death of the filmmaker.
2008 Mar 31, In Mexico Juana
Barraza (50), a former female wrestler who terrorized Mexico City as
the "Little Old Lady Killer," was sentenced to 759 years in jail for
killing 16 elderly women.
2008 Mar 31, Turkey's top court
decided to put the Islamist-rooted ruling party on trial for alleged
anti-secular activity, in a case that could threaten national
stability and Ankara's bid to join the EU. Clashes between Turkish
troops and Kurdish rebels left nine rebels and three soldiers dead
in Turkey's southeast.
(AFP, 3/31/08)(AP, 4/1/08)
2008 Mar 31, Zimbabwe's
opposition Movement for Democratic Change and President Robert
Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF were on level-pegging, as the results
trickled in from a weekend general election. The MDC's own tally of
votes in 128 of the 210 parliamentary seats showed that its leader
Tsvangirai had secured 60 percent of votes against 30 for Mugabe in
the presidential race.
2009 Mar 31, The US Government
Accountability Office released a report saying 4 countries
designated a terrorism sponsors received $55 million from a US
supported program promoting the peaceful use of nuclear energy under
the IAEA’s Technical Cooperation program. Between 1997 and 2007 Iran
received over $15 million, $14 million went to Syria, while Sudan
and Cuba received over $11 million each.
(WSJ, 3/31/09, p.A3)
2009 Mar 31, The US State
Department said the United States will seek election to the UN Human
Rights Council this year, announcing the Obama administration's
latest reversal of former President George W. Bush's foreign
2009 Mar 31, The US Congress
passed the Edward Kennedy Serve America Act, a sweeping overhaul of
the 1993 national service program. It tripled the size of AmeriCorps
from 75,000 positions to 250,000.
(Econ, 4/11/09, p.30)
2009 Mar 31, Fritz Henderson,
GM's new chief executive said that more of the automaker's plants
could close and bankruptcy is "more probable" as it works to meet
new, tougher requirements for government aid. In his first news
conference as CEO, Henderson said he expects the company would "need
to take further measures" beyond the 5 plants the company said it
would shutter when it submitted a restructuring plan to the
government last month.
2009 Mar 31, Sun-Times Media
Group, the publisher of the Chicago Sun Times, filed Chapter 11
bankruptcy, becoming the 5th newspaper company to file for
protection since December.
(WSJ, 4/1/09, p.B4)
2009 Mar 31, At the Hague
Afghan President Hamid Karzai and US Secretary of State Hillary
Rodham Clinton offered an olive branch to Taliban fighters who
reject al-Qaida and pressed an international conference for help in
strengthening Afghanistan's security forces.
2009 Mar 31, In southern
Afghanistan foreign and Afghan troops killed 30 Taliban fighters and
wounded 17 others during a series of overnight clashes, while a
roadside bomb killed the mayor of eastern Khost city. A member of
the Kandahar provincial council of religious clerics was shot dead
while going home after prayers. A suicide bomber tried to attack a
police post on the border with Iran but blew himself up prematurely
when police warned him to stop.
(AP, 3/31/09)(AP, 4/1/09)
2009 Mar 31, Raul Alfonsin
(b.1927), former Argentine president (1983-1989), died. He guided
his country's return to democracy following a military dictatorship
that left thousands missing.
2009 Mar 31, In Brazil the
state government of Rio de Janeiro said it will build 7 miles of
concrete walls around some of its biggest slums in an effort to halt
deforestation of the jungle surrounding the metropolis.
(SFC, 4/1/09, p.A2)
2009 Mar 31, Sir Sacheverell
Reresby Sitwell (81) died in London. He restored the stately home of
his famously eccentric family to its former glory. In 1965 Reresby
Sitwell inherited Renishaw Hall in Derbyshire, the family seat since
1625. Sitwell was the elder son of Sacheverell Sitwell, who with his
brother Osbert and sister Edith were famed for their literary talent
and their quirks.
2009 Mar 31, In Cambodia Kaing
Guek Eav (aka Duch), the chief Khmer Rouge torturer, formally
apologized for the deaths of more than 14,000 people at S-21 prison,
the first Pol Pot cadre to accept blame for crimes committed by the
regime 30 years ago.
2009 Mar 31, In China and
official said police have arrested nine people and revoked the
license of a livestock market owner in a case involving pork tainted
with a chemical that made 70 people sick in Guangzhou, southern
China's biggest city. Investigators determined the pork was tainted
with clenbuterol and ractopamine, banned chemicals used to make
animals develop more muscle and less fat.
2009 Mar 31, Twelve Egyptian
laborers headed for jobs in Jordan were killed and 35 others injured
when their bus overturned in the Sinai peninsula.
2009 Mar 31, Angry French
workers facing layoffs at a Caterpillar factory briefly detained
four of their bosses at the US manufacturer's plant in the Alps to
protest job cuts.
2009 Mar 31, Germany's top
security official banned the Homeland-Faithful German Youth (HDJ), a
far-right group, on the ground that it organizes seemingly harmless
activities to promote racist and Nazi ideology among children and
2009 Mar 31, In Honduras
assailants stopped journalist Rafael Munguia (36) as he was driving
night in the city of San Pedro Sula, dragged him from his vehicle
and shot him at least eight times. Munguia had recently been
reporting on the country's violent crime wave.
2009 Mar 31, Volkswagen opened
a new plant in western India, pledging to make further inroads into
the country's growing auto market.
2009 Mar 31, In Iraq a suicide
truck bomber plowed through a sandbag barrier to strike a police
station in the northern city of Mosul, killing at least eight people
and wounding 12. The British military transferred over coalition
command of the oil-rich southern province of Basra to the US. A US
Marine died as the result of a non-combat incident in Anbar
province. A US soldier died in a "noncombat-related incident" in
(AP, 3/31/09)(AP, 4/1/09)
2009 Mar 31, Israel’s
parliament approved Benjamin Netanyahu as prime minister. His
Cabinet of 29 ministers was among the largest in Israel’s history.
Israeli forces attacked a group of Palestinian militants along the
Gaza-Israel border, killing two gunmen and wounding three others in
one of the worst flare-ups of violence since Israel ended its
offensive in the territory more than two months ago.
(SFC, 4/1/09, p.A5)(AP, 3/31/09)
2009 Mar 31, Italian police
said they have arrested Mario Chiesa for his alleged role in a scam
involving garbage disposal in Milan and elsewhere in northern Italy.
He was one of eight people apprehended, with two others being placed
under house arrest. Chiesa was arrested in 1992 and convicted for
his involvement in the Clean Hands corruption scandals. He served
his sentences doing socially useful work and was freed in 2000.
2009 Mar 31, Bernardo De
Bernardinis, deputy chief of Italy’s Civil Protection Department,
told the people in the L'Aquila region that recent tremors over the
last 4 months posed no danger. He and 6 others were later indicted
following the April 6 earthquake that left 308 people dead. Their
trial began in 2011. On Nov 10, 2014, an appeals court cleared the
seven defendants in the case. Dr. De Bernardinis received a two-year
suspended sentence for the deaths of some of the victims.
(Econ, 9/17/11, p.86)(SFC, 11/11/14, p.A2)(Econ,
2009 Mar 31, Madagascar's
neighbors suspended the impoverished nation from their regional
development and democracy club, and threatened to take further steps
if the Indian Ocean island's ousted president is not restored to
2009 Mar 31, Mexico’s Pres.
Calderon revealed that his country had secured a $47 billion line of
credit from the IMF. It was the 1st country to be approved for the
new Flexible Credit Line, which does not require a country to make
(WSJ, 4/2/09, p.A6)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.76)
2009 Mar 31, Mexican
authorities said police in northern Mexico caught a gang that
allegedly stole oil from state-owned pipelines and smuggled it
across the border to sell it to US refineries.
2009 Mar 31, Pakistan's Supreme
Court restored the provincial government of a main opposition leader
in the Punjab, easing political turmoil. The decision by a
five-member bench returned Shahbaz Sharif to his post as chief
minister of Punjab, but it did not end court reviews of a case
questioning the eligibility of Sharif and his brother Nawaz for
2009 Mar 31, Baitullah Mehsud,
the commander of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility for
the March 30 deadly assault on a Pakistani police academy and said
the group was planning a terrorist attack on the White House that
would "amaze" the world. A spokesman from Fedayeen al-Islam, a
little-known militant group linked to the Pakistani Taliban, also
claimed credit for the attack and a similar ambush-style attack
against the Sri Lankan cricket team earlier this month in Lahore.
2009 Mar 31, Peru’s President
Alan Garcia reversed course and accepted a donation from Germany for
a museum honoring those killed in Peru's 20-year armed conflict with
Maoist Shining Path guerrillas.
2009 Mar 31, In Qatar
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez sought Arab support for a proposed
oil-backed currency to challenge the US dollar in his latest swipe
at Washington's dominance in global financial affairs.
2009 Mar 31, In Russia
prominent human rights activist Lev Ponomaryov (67) was beaten
outside his Moscow home by unknown attackers. His daughter, Yelena
Liptser, said she believed Ponomaryov, the head of the All-Russia
Movement for Human Rights, was attacked because of his rights work
and his strident criticism of the Kremlin.
2009 Mar 31, In Moscow, Russia,
the hatch slammed shut behind six volunteers from Europe and Russia
who will spend three months isolated in a capsule to simulate
conditions for a manned mission to Mars.
2009 Mar 31, Sri Lanka's Tamil
Tiger rebels appealed again for a halt to fighting in their war
against the government, though they denied they were on the brink of
defeat despite being backed into an ever-shrinking pocket of land.
2009 Mar 31, In Yemen Jan and
Heleen Janszen, a Dutch couple, were kidnapped in a suburb of Sanaa
and taken to a mountainous area near the capital. They were released
on April 14 after Yemen's government paid more than a quarter
million dollars in ransom.
(AFP, 3/31/09)(SFC, 4/1/09, p.A2)(AP, 4/14/09)
2010 Mar 31, President Barack
Obama announced an expansive new policy that could put oil and
natural gas platforms in waters along the southern Atlantic
coastline, the eastern Gulf of Mexico and part of Alaska.
2010 Mar 31, The US federal
government and environmental groups reached an agreement that will
end the ghost fleet of retired ships in Suisun Bay, Ca.
(SFC, 4/1/10, p.A1)
2010 Mar 31, The CalNeva casino
on the north shore of Lake Tahoe closed due to declining gambling
(SFC, 4/1/10, p.C5)
2010 Mar 31, In Ohio Anthony
Kirkland was sentenced to death for the aggravated murder of Esme
Kenney (13) and for the aggravated murder of Casonya Crawford (14).
The court also sentenced Kirkland to 70-years-to-life for the
murders of Mary Jo Newton and Kimya Rolison. The sentence was later
overturned by the state's Supreme Court. In 2018 a judge, following
the recommendations of a jury, resentenced Kirkland to death.
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_Kirkland)(SFC, 8/29/18, p.A5)
2010 Mar 31, Flooding across
the US Northeast forced hundreds of residents from their homes,
knocked out sewage plants, and snarled traffic on major East Coast
routes as roads. Rhode Island endured the most severe damage as the
Pawtuxet reached 20.8 feet unleashing the worst flooding in over 200
(AP, 3/31/10)(Econ, 4/10/10, p.32)
2010 Mar 31, US Navy Lt. Steven
Zilberman's E-2C Hawkeye went down in the North Arabian Sea after it
"experienced mechanical malfunctions." Three other crew members
survived the crash without significant injuries.
2010 Mar 31, In southern
Afghanistan a bomb concealed on a bicycle killed 13 people, as the
Pentagon's top military officer said NATO forces hope to reverse the
Taliban's momentum in the south with an upcoming offensive in
2010 Mar 31, In Antigua a judge
ruled Wednesday that PM Baldwin Spencer and two other lawmakers were
improperly elected last year, a decision potentially threatening the
governing party's narrow hold on power in this Caribbean country.
Earlier this month, Spencer's government announced that the
International Monetary Fund agreed to lend the country $124 million
over three years.
2010 Mar 31, In Belgium a
parliamentary committee unanimously voted to ban the wearing of
face-covering veils in public, a major step in the legislative
process that could make Belgium the first European country to impose
such a religious prohibition.
2010 Mar 31, US envoy Stephen
Rapp said the US has pledged $5 million to Cambodia's Khmer Rouge
tribunal amid the troubled court's attempts to address corruption
2010 Mar 31, In central China a
gas explosion at a mine killed 12 workers and trapped 32 underground
at the privately owned Guomin Mining Co. coal pit in Yichuan County,
2010 Mar 31, In Dagestan 2
suicide bombers struck near the border with Chechnya, killing 12
2010 Mar 31, Nearly 50 donors
pledged $9.9 billion in reconstruction aid for Haiti at a UN donor
conference, but leaders and businessmen stressed private investment
would be the key to improving the lot of the hemisphere's poorest
2010 Mar 31, Six major world
powers agreed to begin putting together proposed new sanctions on
Iran over its suspect nuclear program after China dropped its
2010 Mar 31, In Iraq gunmen
fatally shot Mohammed Chillab, a health ministry official, at his
home in Baghdad in the latest slaying apparently targeting
government employees. A mobile phone shop owner was gunned down and
killed as he was closing his store for the night.
2010 Mar 31, In Kashmir 4
Indian soldiers and 10 separatist guerrillas were killed in clashes,
the highest number of people killed in firefights in 24 hours in
2010 Mar 31, In Mexico
authorities in the Gulf coast state of Tabasco announced that
Roberto Rivero Arana, the nephew of reputed Zetas gang leader
Heriberto Lazcano, was captured together with Daniel Perez, an
acting police chief of Ciudad del Carmen, accused of protecting the
Zetas. 4 severed human heads were found in Apatzingan, a town in the
western state of Michoacan. In Morelia, the Michoacan state capital,
police reported finding the bodies of 3 young men who had been shot
to death. Police in the border city of Nogales reported finding the
bullet-ridden bodies of 3 men, including a city transport official,
on a rural road along with three burned-out vehicles.
2010 Mar 31, Niger's police
director said police have arrested more than 600 people in an effort
to crackdown on recent crime and insecurity in the capital.
2010 Mar 31, Nigerian gunmen
kidnapped Chris Nnaji. a local employee of French oil group Total,
on his way to work in the country's oil hub of Port Harcourt.
2010 Mar 31, In Pakistan US
missiles and fighting in the mountains killed up to 36 militants and
six Pakistani soldiers as violence swept the northwest tribal belt
2010 Mar 31, In southern Russia
2 suicide bombers, including one impersonating a police officer,
killed 12 people in Dagestan. PM Vladimir Putin said the blasts may
have been organized by the same militants who attacked the Moscow
subway. Russian police broke up anti-Kremlin protests in Moscow and
St. Petersburg, detaining dozens of demonstrators who had defied
bans in holding the rallies.
2010 Mar 31, Scotland and
Northern Ireland were battered by snow, gale force winds and
torrential rain, leaving thousands of people without power and
causing havoc on roads.
2010 Mar 31, In Spain flight
attendant Adriana Ricardo said attendants owed up to nine months'
wages by a grounded Spanish airline have posed nude for a calendar
to draw attention to their plight. Air Comet, run by the embattled
chairman of Spain's main employers' association CEOE, Gerardo
Ferran, filed for administration in December after a British court
impounded nine of its aircraft at the request of German bank HSH
2010 Mar 31, Southern Sudan's
main political party withdrew its candidate from the country's
upcoming presidential election and said it will not contest
parliamentary and local polls in Darfur, a move that erodes the
credibility of Sudan's first multiparty election in decades.
2010 Mar 31, Swiss authorities
said they could not reopen a money-laundering case against the
Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari as long as he enjoys legal
2010 Mar 31, Taiwan officials
lost contact with the 79-ton Jih-chun Tsai 68 fishing trawler and
the government feared the boat may have been hijacked by pirates off
the Somali coast.
2010 Mar 31, Google Inc. says
malicious software has been used to spy on Vietnamese computer users
opposed to a controversial bauxite mine in the Southeast Asian
country. Computer security firm McAfee said the perpetrators may be
linked to the communist government.
2011 Mar 31, It was reported
that the World Trade Organization has ruled that some US government
aid to aircraft maker Boeing Co. is illegal. The WTO's report
detailed findings first issued in private to the EU and US in
2011 Mar 31, SF Giants fan
Bryan Stow was beaten and left in a coma following a game outside
Dodger Stadium. LA police on May 22 arrested suspect Giovanni
Ramirez (31). On June 20 Ramirez was given a 10-month prison
sentence for alleged gun possession. On July 21 police arrested two
new suspects in the case, Louis Alex Sanchez (29) and Marvin Eugene
Norwood (30). Stow spent two years in hospitals and rehabilitation.
On Feb 20, 2014, Louie Sanchez (31) and Marvin Norwood (33) pleaded
guilty in LA to felony charges in the attack on Stow.
(SFC, 5/23/11, p.A1)(SFC, 6/21/11, p.C2)(SFC,
7/22/11, p.A1)(SFC, 7/23/11, p.A8)(SFC, 2/21/14, p.A1)
2011 Mar 31, In Afghanistan
NATO soldiers killed two civilians after opening fire on a car which
the force said had tried to attack a patrol in Kandahar city. A
local official said an ISAF soldier opened fire after a civilian car
hit one of their vehicles in a traffic accident.
2011 Mar 31, In Argentina a
court sentenced former Army Gen. Eduardo Cabanillas to life in
prison and three ex-state agents to 20 or 25 years for crimes
against humanity committed at Automotores Orletti, the notorious
torture center of Operation Condor in 1976.
2011 Mar 31, Britain’s former
Labor Party MP Jim Devine was sentenced to 16 months in prison. He
had been convicted of two charges of false accounting for filing
bogus invoices for cleaning and printing work totaling more than
8,000 pounds ($13,000).
2011 Mar 31, The British
government said in a human rights report published about 1,000
people are believed to have been killed in clashes between
supporters and opponents of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. Britain
refused to offer Libyan Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa immunity from
prosecution after his apparent defection.
2011 Mar 31, Britain's Prince
Charles met with Spanish PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero for talks
centering on the environment and sustainable development.
2011 Mar 31, Canadian Lt. Gen.
Charles Bouchard, the new commander of international military
operations in Libya, warned that anyone attacking civilians would be
"ill-advised" to continue, and said he would look into a report by a
Vatican envoy that air strikes had killed 40 innocent people.
2011 Mar 31, In China French
President Nicolas Sarkozy and US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner
called for more flexible exchange rate regimes as G20 nations met on
global monetary reform in Nanjing.
2011 Mar 31, Guatemala police
said some 400 people marched in support of Juan Alberto Ortiz Lopez,
a reputed top drug trafficker captured by the government and the US
Drug Enforcement Administration. Participant Juan Pablo Mendez said
the Ortiz did what the government doesn't, create jobs and support
2011 Mar 31, In India
provisional census figures said the population jumped to 1.21
billion in 2011 from 1.02 billion in 2001, making it more populous
than Indonesia, the United States, Brazil, Pakistan and Bangladesh
combined. The nation's cultural preference for male children
continued to shape the population as child sex ratio in the country
declined to 914 females to 1,000 males, the lowest figures since
2011 Mar 31, Indonesia arrested
43 Afghans who were trying to reach Australia illegally.
2011 Mar 31, Iranian security
forces arrested at least seven people at the funeral of the father
of reformist opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi.
2011 Mar 31, The Israeli
military released a map detailing what it says are nearly 1,000
underground bunkers, weapons storage facilities and monitoring sites
built by the militant Hezbollah guerrillas in southern Lebanon.
2011 Mar 31, Italy shipped more
than 2,000 migrants to detention camps on its mainland, relieving
pressure on Lampedusa, a tiny island off Sicily which has been
overwhelmed by a relentless stream of boats full of illegal arrivals
from North African shores.
2011 Mar 31, Japan said that
its crisis-hit nuclear plant must be scrapped, but currently had no
plans to evacuate more people, despite calls for a larger exclusion
zone around the crippled facility.
2011 Mar 31, Kuwait's Cabinet
resigned over regional turmoil. The resignation appeared to be an
attempt by three Cabinet ministers, members of the ruling Al Sabah
family, to avoid being questioned over why Kuwait did not contribute
troops to the Saudi-led Gulf force that was sent to Bahrain. Kuwait
announced it is to expel a number of Iranian diplomats for alleged
(AP, 3/31/11)(AFP, 3/31/11)
2011 Mar 31, Libyan rebels
fought for control of the eastern oil town of Brega. Opponents took
heart in the defection of Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa, one of the
autocrat's closest confidants.
(Reuters, 3/31/11)(AP, 3/31/11)
2011 Mar 31, Mexico’s President
Felipe Calderon accepted the resignation of Arturo Chavez Chavez, an
attorney general known mainly for his weak image in a country
fighting a drug war, and nominated Marisela Morales, his top
organized crime prosecutor as a successor, the first woman to hold
the post if she is approved. In Ciudad Juarez 5 people were killed
at a bar called La Barritas. Gunmen assaulted another bar called El
Castillo. The death toll from the attack rose to 10 after two more
people died the next day from their wounds.
(AP, 4/1/11)(AP, 4/2/11)(AFP, 4/3/11)
2011 Mar 31, In northwestern
Pakistan a suicide bomber struck a convoy carrying Maulana Fazlur
Rehman, a prominent hardline Islamist leader, killing 13 people in
Charsadda town. This was the second attack that targeted the
politician in as many days.
(AP, 3/31/11)(AFP, 4/1/11)
2011 Mar 31, South Korea's
Constitutional Court upheld a military law banning homosexual
behavior, saying the need to maintain discipline takes precedence
over individual sexual freedom.
2011 Mar 31, In Switzerland a
letter bomb exploded at an office of the Swiss nuclear power
industry in the northern city of Olten, injuring two people.
2011 Mar 31, Syria's Pres.
Bashar Assad, facing a massive protest movement demanding reform,
set up committees to look into the deaths of civilians during nearly
two weeks of unrest and replacing decades-old emergency laws.
2011 Mar 31, Thailand's navy
used helicopters and an aircraft carrier to rescue more than 800
tourists stranded by heavy rains on the country's picturesque
2011 Mar 31, A report by Human
Rights Watch said Vietnam has increased repression of indigenous
minority Christians in the Central Highlands. Hill tribe minorities,
known as Montagnards, converted to Christianity in large numbers
over the past half century.
(SFC, 4/1/11, p.A2)
2012 Mar 31, Bahraini security
forces fired tear gas during clashes with protesters who gathered
after authorities acknowledged that gunfire earlier in the day
killed Ahmed Ismail (22) during anti-government demonstrations.
2012 Mar 31, China’s official
Xinhua news agency said authorities have closed 16 websites for
spreading rumors of "military vehicles entering Beijing and
something wrong going on there. China made a string of arrests and
punished two popular microblogs after rumors of a coup linked to a
major scandal that brought down a top politician.
2012 Mar 31, China opened the
record breaking 4,000-ft-long Aizhai Bridge in Hunan province.
Construction began in October 2007. It is the world's highest and
longest tunnel-to-tunnel bridge.
2012 Mar 31, Cuba said it will
honor an appeal by Pope Benedict XVI and declared next week's Good
Friday a holiday for the first time since the early days following
the island's 1959 Revolution, though a decision on whether the move
will be permanent will have to wait.
2012 Mar 31, Five Egyptian
Copts, including two teenage girls, were crushed to death at the
tomb of their spiritual leader Pope Shenuda III who died last week.
Monastery officials had allowed visitors to visit Shenuda's tomb,
prompting a rush to the desert monastery.
2012 Mar 31, In Iraq unknown
gunmen shot dead a member of the Sahwa anti-Qaeda militia forces
along with his wife and son north of Baghdad in Diyala province.
2012 Mar 31, Amnesty
International urged Jordan to free six political activists charged
with insulting King Abdullah II, saying that at least three of them
were beaten during interrogation. The men were arrested and charged
by military prosecutors in mid-March after a demonstration in the
southern city of Tafileh. Jordanian security forces arrested 12
activists for insulting the country's King Abdullah II in a rally in
(AFP, 3/31/12)(AP, 3/31/12)
2012 Mar 31, Libya's
transitional government head Abdel Rahim al-Kib announced that a
ceasefire deal has been struck between tribes at Sabha. At least 16
people were killed in tribal clashes in the southern desert oasis of
Sabha. Toubou fighters, who had been pushed back several km south of
Sabha, launched a counter-attack early today in a bid to re-enter
the city. The toll reached 147 dead and 395 wounded in six days.
(AFP, 3/31/12)(AP, 3/31/12)
2012 Mar 31, The Libyan
ministry of defense enlisted more than 8,000 former rebels who will
be trained in the protection of borders and strategic sites
including the nation's vital oil installations.
2012 Mar 31, The IMF again
pressured impoverished Malawi to devalue its currency, which is
trading on the black market at nearly double the official exchange
2012 Mar 31, In Mali Tuareg
rebels attacked the strategic northern city of Gao, a day after they
took the provincial capital of Kidal. Junta head Captain Amadou
Sanogo ordered the army "not to prolong the fighting" in Gao, a move
that left the main northern town open to the rampant rebels.
(AP, 3/31/12)(AFP, 3/31/12)
2012 Mar 31, In Nicaragua
businessman Henry Farinas and six others were accused of
trafficking, money laundering and ties to organized crime. Farinas
was the apparent target of an attack that claimed the life of
Argentine folk singer Facundo Cabral last year.
2012 Mar 31, Nigerian troops
clashed with suspected members of Islamist group Boko Haram in a
raid on an alleged hideout, leaving 11 dead, including a soldier and
policeman in the Okene district of Kogi state. Suspected members of
Islamist group Boko Haram attacked three police stations in Yobe
state, burning two of them.
(AFP, 3/31/12)(AFP, 4/1/12)
2012 Mar 31, In southern
Thailand suspected Muslim insurgents staged the most deadly attack
in years, killing 14 people and wounding 340 with car bombs that
targeted shoppers just before lunchtime in Yala city. Five people
were killed and dozens injured in a fire at a hotel in Hat Yai, the
largest city in southern Thailand.
(AFP, 3/31/12)(AP, 4/1/12)
2012 Mar 31, Tunisia's
Religious Affairs Minister Nourredine al-Khademi said the country
will take stock of the hundreds of mosques now in the hands of
ultra-conservatives. He estimated that about 400 of more than 5,000
mosques had fallen under the sway of Salafist extremists.
2012 Mar 31, Venezuelan
President Hugo Chavez traveled to Cuba for another round of cancer
2012 Mar 31, In Yemen
Al-Qaida-linked militants staged a surprise attack on a government
army base in al-Mallah town in southern Lahij province, setting off
clashes that left 28 soldiers and 12 militants dead before air
strikes forced the militants to retreat.
(AP, 3/31/12)(AFP, 4/3/12)
2013 Mar 31, An Alaska State
Trooper helicopter crashed overnight during a mission to rescue a
stranded snowmobiler. All three onboard were believed killed.
(SFC, 4/1/13, p.A5)
2013 Mar 31, Tesla reported
that it had scored the first quarterly profit in its history after
selling more luxury electric cars than forecast.
(SFC, 4/2/13, p.D1)
2013 Mar 31, Afghan Pres. Hamid
Karzai met with the emir of Qatar in Doha to discuss the possible
opening of a Taliban office in Qatar.
(SFC, 4/1/13, p.A4)
2013 Mar 31, In Brazil a French
man and US woman studying Portuguese were held for hours while the
woman was sexually assaulted aboard a public transport van they
boarded in Rio de Janeiro's Copacabana beach neighborhood. Three
men, ages 20 to 22, were soon taken into custody and a third was
being sought in connection with the attack. Police later detained a
14-year-old suspected of participating in the attack. On Aug 14
three men were convicted of grand theft, rape and extortion.
(AP, 4/2/13)(SFC, 4/3/13, p.A3)(SFC, 4/9/13,
2013 Mar 31, Chinese officials
confirmed that three recent cases of influenza were due to a new
strain called H7N9.
(Econ, 4/20/13, p.83)
2013 Mar 31, A study by the New
Delhi-based Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry said the
number of foreigners traveling to India has dropped by 25 percent
due to sex attacks. The number of women tourists has dropped by 35
2013 Mar 31, Israel began
receiving natural gas from the Tamar reservoir in the Mediterranean
Sea at the port of Ashdod.
(SFC, 4/1/13, p.A4)
2013 Mar 31, In Kuwait a lower
court sentenced online activist Hamed al-Khaledi to two years in
jail for insulting the country's emir.
2013 Mar 31, In Morocco several
thousand members of the country’s two largest labor unions marched
through Rabat to protest the Islamist-led governments planned
economic and labor reforms and its failure to stem unemployment and
(SFC, 4/1/13, p.A2)
2013 Mar 31, Nigeria's military
said soldiers have attacked a home in Kano believed to harbor
Islamic extremists. The assault killed 14 people. At least 19 people
were reported killed after gunmen, believed to be nomadic Muslim
cattle herders, raided Ataka village in Kaduna state.
(AP, 3/31/13)(AP, 4/1/13)
2013 Mar 31, In Pakistan
Taliban militants attacked with a roadside bomb the election
motorcade of Malik Adnan Wazir, a secularist-backed politician,
wounding him and killing two of his supporters in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
2013 Mar 31, Syria's state news
said rebels have set fire to 3 oil wells. SANA said that the fires
would cause a daily loss of 4,670 barrels of oil and 52 cubic meters
of natural gas. SANA said rebels have set fire to a total of nine
wells in recent months.
2013 Mar 31, Pope Francis
delivered a plea for peace in his first Easter Sunday message to the
2014 Mar 31, In Connecticut The
Rev. Paul Gotta was arrested on seven sexual assault charges. Police
say the assaults took place over the span of a year beginning in
January 2012. He was arrested by federal authorities last year on
charges including illegally transferring a gun, ammunition and
explosive material to a juvenile.
2014 Mar 31, Charles Keating
(b.1923), moral crusader and former Arizona land developer, died in
Phoenix. He had bilked some 23,000 investors out of their savings in
Lincoln Savings, a savings and loan association based in Irvine,
Ca., that went bust in 1989.
(Econ, 4/12/14, p.94)
2014 Mar 31, In Afghanistan
insurgent attacks across the country killed 18 people. In the north
Taliban gunmen overnight abducted Hussain Nazari, a candidate
running for a seat in a provincial council and seven members of his
2014 Mar 31, Chinese
prosecutors brought corruption charges against a top general. A
military prosecutor charged Lt. Gen. Gu Junshan with embezzlement,
bribery, misuse of state funds and abuse of power. Liu Han, a mining
tycoon, his brother and 34 associates stood trial on allegations of
running a vast criminal gang in Sichuan province that gunned down
rivals, maintained fleets of Ferraris and bribed police to avoid
2014 Mar 31, A Croatian court
sentenced the country's former army chief retired general Mladen
Kruljac to 18 months in prison, saying he and five others had
manipulated real estate prices in deals that eventually cost Croatia
61.2 million kuna ($11 million).
2014 Mar 31, An Egyptian court
in Alexandria sentenced 33 supporters of ousted Islamist President
Mohammed Morsi to six years in prison each over clashes with
opponents last December. Each defendant was also fined 50,000
Egyptian pounds (about $7,100).
2014 Mar 31, German authorities
arrested three people in raids against suspected supporters of a
hardline Islamic group in Syria, a move meant to curb risks posed by
extremists returning from Syria's civil war.
2014 Mar 31, Germany's
Lufthansa said it will cancel some 3,800 flights because of a
three-day strike by the pilots' union later this week (April 2-4),
hitting more than 425,000 passengers.
2014 Mar 31, In Germany workers
at Amazon’s logistics center in Leipzig staged the short-term
warning strike to try to get management to return to the negotiating
table over wages.
2014 Mar 31, Doctors Without
Borders warned that health authorities in Guinea faced an
"unprecedented epidemic" of Ebola, as the death toll from the
disease that causes severe bleeding reached 78.
2014 Mar 31, An Israeli court
convicted former PM Ehud Olmert (68) in a wide-ranging bribery case.
Olmert was charged for acts committed while he was mayor of
Jerusalem and minister of industry and trade.
2014 Mar 31, The International
Court of Justice ordered a temporary halt to Japan's Antarctic
whaling program, ruling that it is not for scientific purposes as
the Japanese government had claimed.
2014 Mar 31, In Kenya three
almost simultaneous blasts in Eastleigh, the main Somali district of
Nairobi, left at least 6 people dead.
2014 Mar 31, The Libyan
Investment Authority, a sovereign wealth fund set up in 2006, said
it is suing French bank Societe Generale in a British court for $1.5
billion (1.1 billion euros) for allegedly channeling bribes to
allies of the son of slain dictator Moamer Kadhafi.
2014 Mar 31, A Nigerian court
ruled that lawmakers who defected to the main opposition coalition
in December must vacate their seats. This was a victory for
President Goodluck Jonathan ahead of what will be a closely fought
election in February 2015.
2014 Mar 31, North and South
Korea exchanged artillery fire in disputed waters in an apparent new
round of saber-rattling by Pyongyang during annual US-South Korean
2014 Mar 31, A special
Pakistani court indicted former military ruler Pervez Musharraf on
five counts of high treason, a charge that potentially carries the
death penalty. The development is the first time that an acting or
former army chief has been indicted for treason in Pakistan.
2014 Mar 31, Russia’s PM
Medvedev said Crimea will be made a special economic zone offering
tax breaks and reduced bureaucracy to attract investors.
2014 Mar 31, Switzerland's
competition regulator named eight global banks it is investigating
for possible manipulation of foreign exchange rates. It cited the
two largest Swiss banks, UBS and Credit Suisse, along with Zurich
Cantonal Bank, Julius Baer and JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Barclays
Bank and Royal Bank of Scotland Group.
2014 Mar 31, Syrian army troops
recaptured a key position in coastal Latakia province. Observatory
45 is a strategic hilltop that overlooks several areas inhabited by
residents from the Alawite community.
2014 Mar 31, Two Tunisian
police officers were convicted of raping a young woman in September
2012, and sentenced to seven years in prison in a case that drew
widespread protests after the victim was initially accused of
2014 Mar 31, Key Ugandan
opposition leader and mayor of the capital Erias Lukwago resumed
office five months after being ousted in a power struggle with the
ruling party. A court ruling last week said his removal had been
2014 Mar 31, Ukraine reported a
gradual withdrawal of Russian troops from its border that may be
linked to Washington's latest push for a diplomatic solution to the
worst East-West standoff since the Cold War.
2014 Mar 31, In Ukraine a Right
Sector member shot and wounded three people outside a restaurant
adjacent to Kiev's main Independence Square, including a deputy city
mayor, triggering a standoff that lasted overnight.
2015 Mar 31, Pres. Obama
removed his holds on the delivery of F-16 aircraft, Harpoon missiles
and M1A1 tanks kits to Egypt and assured Pres. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi
that he would continue to support $1.3 billion in annual military
(SFC, 4/1/15, p.A2)
2015 Mar 31, The US Treasury
Dept. imposed new sanctions on Syria's government aimed at blunting
its weapons programs and pushing it into negotiations with rebels.
The action targeted Batoul Rida, a Syrian central bank official, and
three "front companies" that help fund Syria's development of
ballistic missiles and nonconventional weapons.
2015 Mar 31, The US Supreme
Court barred doctors, dentists and druggists from going to court to
fight cutbacks in Medicaid payments.
(SFC, 4/1/15, p.A7)
2015 Mar 31, A US federal
bankruptcy judge approved the sale of assets of RadioShack to hedge
fund Standard General that will keep more than 1,700 stores open.
Some 2,000 stores were already closed or in the process of closing.
(SFC, 4/1/15, p.C3)
2015 Mar 31, In southern
California Andrew Getty (47), heir to the Getty family oil fortune,
was found dead at his home in the Hollywood Hills.
(SFC, 4/2/15, p.D1)
2015 Mar 31, In Connecticut
John Zelepos (48), the owner of Mystic Pizza restaurant, pleaded
guilty to federal tax charges. Prosecutors said that between 2006
and 2010 he diverted just over $567,000 from gross receipts into his
personal bank accounts. The restaurant was featured in the 1988 film
“Mystic Pizza" with Julia Roberts.
(SFC, 4/3/15, p.A5)
2015 Mar 31, In Buffalo, NY, a
reclining statue of a homeless and blanket shrouded Jesus by
Canadian sculptor Timothy Schmalz, was unveiled outside St. Paul’s
Episcopal Cathedral. People soon began to leave money, food and
other items for the homeless at the statue.
2015 Mar 31, In Argentina
transportation unions brought the country to a standstill with a
one-day nationwide strike to protest income tax rates and high
2015 Mar 31, In Australia 55
dead greyhounds were found dumped and spent rifle cartridges seen
nearby in near Bundaberg, Queensland state. The grisly discovery
came on the heels of a live baiting scandal rocking the dog racing
2015 Mar 31, In Chile a Bell
206 helicopter went missing while flying with drinking water for
residents of a desert region recently hit by flash-floods. It was
found on April 2 and the pilot and 3 other people aboard were dead.
Pilot Pedro Pablo Aldunate was married to one of Pres. Bachelet's
2015 Mar 31, In Colombia a
truck lost its brakes and smashed into at least four cars, killing
10 people and injuring 14 more on the highway linking Bogota with
2015 Mar 31, Crimea's
independent television station ATR went off air at midnight after
Russian authorities repeatedly refused to give it a broadcasting
2015 Mar 31, In Germany
windstorm Niklas, which entailed wind speeds of up to 192 kilometers
(119 miles) per hour, was one of the five most costly storms to hit
the country in the last 15 years. German insurers later said they
were likely to face damage claims of around 750 million euros ($808
2015 Mar 31, In India fierce
rain and lightning toppled houses and trees in Bihar state, killing
2015 Mar 31, Iran and six world
powers ramped up the pace in negotiations in Switzerland over a
preliminary deal on Tehran's nuclear program. Officials cautioned
that any agreement would likely be fragile and incomplete.
2015 Mar 31, Iraqi PM Haidar
al-Abadi said government troops aided by Shi'ite paramilitaries have
driven Islamic State out of central Tikrit, but the fight to retake
all of Saddam Hussein's home town continued. A suicide bomber
targeted a bus carrying Iranian Shiite pilgrims north of Baghdad,
killing 6 people, including 4 Iranians.
(Reuters, 3/31/15)(AP, 3/31/15)(SFC, 4/1/15,
2015 Mar 31, In Japan a
landmark vote by the assembly of Tokyo's Shibuya ward, the district
famous as a mecca for trendy youngsters became the first locale in
Japan to recognize same sex partnerships as the "equivalent of a
marriage," guaranteeing the identical rights of married couples,
including hospital visitations and apartment rentals.
2015 Mar 31, In Kashmir
rescuers recovered 16 bodies from two houses hit by rain-triggered
landslides, following its second major floods in six months.
2015 Mar 31, In Libya lawmakers
in the Tripoli-based General National Congress (GNC) voted to sack
prime minister Omar al-Hassi, accusing him of failing to tackle
2015 Mar 31, In Nigeria the
opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) declared victory for its
candidate, former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari, in the March 28
2015 Mar 31, Saudi-led
airstrikes pounded Yemen's Shiite rebels for the sixth day,
destroying missiles and weapons depots controlled by the rebels. The
UN human rights office in Geneva said that in the past five days, at
least 93 civilians have been killed and 364 wounded in five Yemeni
cities. Airstrikes hit a dairy factory near Hodeida killing 23.
(AP, 3/31/15)(Econ., 4/4/15, p.44)
2015 Mar 31, In central Syria
the Islamic State jihadist group killed at least 46 civilians,
including two children, in a raid on a regime-held village in Hama
province. Jihadist fighters from the IS group took hostage at least
50 civilians, almost half of them women, seized in a raid on Mabujeh
village, Hama province.
(AFP, 3/31/15)(AP, 4/10/15)(Econ., 4/11/15, p.43)
2015 Mar 31, A Thai military
court sentenced Bangkok businessman Thiensutham Suthijitseranee to
25 years in prison on charges of defaming the country's monarchy in
what appears to be the longest sentence handed down in recent years
for the crime of lese majeste.
2015 Mar 31, In Turkey an
Istanbul court acquitted 236 military officers of charges of
plotting a 2003 coup to overthrow the government of then-PM Recep
2015 Mar 31, In Turkey a
massive power cut caused chaos and shut down public transport across
the country, with the government refusing to rule out that the
electricity system had been the victim of an attack.
2015 Mar 31, In Turkey two
members of a banned left-wing group, DHKP-C, held prosecutor Mehmet
Selim Kiraz hostage in an Istanbul courthouse for six hours. All
three died in a shootout between the hostage-takers and police.
(AP, 4/1/15)(SFC, 4/7/15, p.A2)
2015 Mar 31, UN Secretary
General Ban Ki-moon said donors meeting in Kuwait have pledged $3.8
billion in humanitarian aid for the people of war-wracked Syria.
2016 Mar 31, President Barack
Obama hosted a nuclear security summit of world leaders in
2016 Mar 31, US President
Barack Obama reaffirmed the US commitment to Turkey's security
during a meeting with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, while also
discussing both countries' efforts to fight Islamic State.
2016 Mar 31, The United States
and its allies staged 17 strikes against Islamic State in their
latest round of daily attacks in Iraq and Syria against the militant
2016 Mar 31, Donald Trump and
Jeff Sessions both supported a proposal during the presidential
campaign that Trump meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin. This
was made public in 2018 by former presidential advisor George
Papadopoulos. In November 2017 Sessions testified before Congress
that he had "pushed back" against the proposal by Papadopoulos at
the campaign meeting.
2016 Mar 31, In Georgia Joshua
Bishop was executed at the state prison in Jackson for the 1994
killing of leverett Morrison.
(SFC, 4/1/16, p.A6)
2016 Mar 31, In Tennessee a
sewage line broke and began dumping up to 50 million gallons of
untreated wastewater per day into a Mississippi River tributary.
(SSFC, 4/3/16, p.A6)
2016 Mar 31, In Virginia a
gunman fatally shot state Trooper Chad Dermeyer (37) at a bus
terminal in Richmond, before he was shot dead by two other troopers.
(SFC, 4/1/16, p.A6)
2016 Mar 31, Tesla began taking
orders for its new Model 3, a luxury electric sedan at a
middle-class price of $35,000.
(SFC, 4/1/16, p.A7)
2016 Mar 31, Bosnian police
arrested 10 people suspected of criminal activities which cost the
country's banking sector around 123 million Bosnian marka ($71.2
million) or over 10 percent of the central government's budget.
2016 Mar 31, British actor
Douglas Wilmer (96) died in Ipswich. He played detective Sherlock
Holmes in a television series (1964-1965) in the TV movie "The
Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother" (1975).
2016 Mar 31, A US-based
advocacy group says 98 girls in Central African Republic reported
they were sexually abused by international peacekeepers, and three
girls told UN staff they were tied up, undressed and forced to have
sex with a dog by a French military commander in 2014.
2016 Mar 31, Cameroon’s
military said it has launched a new operation to rid the country of
Boko Haram militants "once and for all" and soldiers are prepared to
storm one of the group's remaining strongholds in Nigeria.
2016 Mar 31, Voters in the
Central African Republic went to the polls for the 2nd round of the
country's parliamentary election, a day after the new president was
2016 Mar 31, In China 2 forest
rangers died in a forest fire caused by people burning fake paper
money and incense in a traditional ceremony to honor dead ancestors
in the eastern city of Qingdao.
2016 Mar 31, In eastern Congo
DRC wildlife ranger Oscar Mianziro, was fatally shot in Kahuzi-Biega
National Park as he returned from a mission to track endangered
gorillas. He was killed while investigating a truck that had been
looted and left on the side of a park road.
2016 Mar 31, In France
demonstrators clashed with police in the streets during fresh
protests over labor reforms. Official figures said at least 200,000
people had joined demonstrations in around 50 towns around the
country despite rainy weather.
2016 Mar 31, In Germany
satirist Jan Boehmermann explained that he wanted to clarify the
boundaries of free speech law and declaimed a series of fictional
passages on TV depicting Turkey’s Pres. Recep Tayyip Erdogan
engrossed in a series of athletically challenging sexual activities
with barnyard animals.
(Econ, 4/16/16, p.43)
2016 Mar 31, Imre Kertesz (86),
the Hungarian writer who won the 2002 Nobel Prize for Literature for
a body of fiction largely drawn from his experience as a teenage
prisoner in Nazi concentration camps, died at his Budapest home.
"Fateless," the novel that together with other works brought him the
2002 Nobel, finally appeared in 1975 after a decade-long struggle to
have it published.
2016 Mar 31, In Hungary Bela
Biszku (b.1921), the only high-ranking communist-era official to be
tried for his role in the repression after the 1956 revolution, died
in Budapest. Biszku, who served as interior minister between March
1957 and September 1961, denied any involvement but was sentenced in
2014 to five years and six months in prison for war crimes and other
charges, including his role in nearly 50 deaths.
2016 Mar 31, In India an
overpass under construction in Kolkata collapsed on to vehicles and
street vendors below, killing 23 people with more than 100 people
2016 Mar 31, Iraqi Shiite
cleric Moqtada al-Sadr ordered his followers to end a two-week
sit-in at entrances to Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone aimed
at pressuring the government to carry out reforms. The announcement
came after PM Haider al-Abadi presented a proposed lineup for new
cabinet ministers to parliament -- a measure which Sadr had
2016 Mar 31, Lebanon's armed
forces acquired three US helicopters worth $26 million to help in
efforts to stop Syria's civil war spilling over its border, along
with almost $29 million of British aid as EU countries also step up
2016 Mar 31, In Liberia a woman
(30) died of Ebola, months after the West African nation was
declared free of the virus. Officials later said there were strong
indications the woman came from Guinea when the border was closed.
(Reuters, 4/1/16)(AP, 4/3/16)
2016 Mar 31, Myanmar Pres.
Thein Sein stepped down from office. The next day he shaved his head
and disappeared into a Buddhist order.
(Econ, 4/23/16, p.31)
2016 Mar 31, In the Philippines
a Chinese casino junket operator returned $4.63 million of the $81
million that hackers stole from the Bangladesh central bank's
account in the US Federal Reserve Bank and laundered in Manila's
2016 Mar 31, In central Somalia
a suicide bombing killed at least 9 people and wounded 10 others at
a cafe near a hotel in the town of Galkayo.
2016 Mar 31, In Somalia a US
drone strike killed Hassan Ali Dhoore, a key leader of the al-Shabab
militant group, along with two others. Dhoore was involved in two
attacks in Mogadishu more than a year ago that killed more than 30
2016 Mar 31, South Africa's top
court ruled that President Jacob Zuma flouted the constitution in
using public funds to upgrade his private residence and must repay
the money, sparking calls for his impeachment.
2016 Mar 31, South Korean
activist prostitutes said they would appeal to the United Nations to
win back their right to work after the Constitutional Court rejected
a petition to overturn a law that punishes sex workers.
2016 Mar 31, Syrian President
Bashar al-Assad told Russia's RIA news agency that the army of
Turkish Pres. Erdogan is fighting in Syria. RIA also reported that
Assad said he was ready to hold early presidential elections if the
Syrian people wanted it.
2016 Mar 31, Syria, airstrikes
in the Deir al-Asafir district southeast of Damascus killed 33
people, mostly women and children.
2016 Mar 31, In Turkey a car
bomb attack killed 7 police officers and wounded 27 other people in
the southeastern city of Diyarbakir. The outlawed Kurdistan Workers
Party (PKK) soon claimed responsibility. On April 2 a suspect, named
as A.C., was detained in the Kocakoy district of Diyarbakir.
(Reuters, 4/1/16)(AFP, 4/2/16)
2016 Mar 31, UN war crimes
judges acquitted radical Serb leader Vojislav Seselj (61) on all
nine charges of committing atrocities in the 1990s Balkans wars in a
surprise verdict swiftly denounced as "shameful" by Croatia.
2016 Mar 31, Vatican officials
said an investigation has been opened into the financing of
renovations at a luxury penthouse occupied by Italian cardinal
Tarcisio Bertone, the former number two in the Holy See hierarchy.
2016 Mar 31, Vietnam's
parliament elected Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan (61) as its chairwoman,
making her the first woman to lead the Communist-dominated
2017 Mar 31, A US federal judge
approved an agreement for Pres. Donald Trump to pay $25 million to
settle lawsuits over his now defunct Trump University ending nearly
seven years of legal battles.
(SFC, 4/1/17, p.A9)
2017 Mar 31, Richard N. Bolles
(b.1927), author of “What Color Is Your Parachute" (1970), died in
Danville, Ca. The former Harvard physics major and Episcopal priest
wrote the book as a guide to help readers understand themselves.
(SFC, 4/4/17, p.D1)
2017 Mar 31, NYC Mayor Bill de
Blasio vowed to begin a ten-year process to shut down the Rikers
(Econ, 4/15/17, p.26)
2017 Mar 31, Pop artist James
Rosenquist (83) died in NYC. “F-111" his best known work was made in
1964-1965 as a protest against US militarism.
(SSFC, 4/2/17, p.C11)
2017 Mar 31, Belarus police
searched the offices of a Polish satellite TV channel that has given
extensive coverage to a recent wave of anti-government protests.
2017 Mar 31, Tens of thousands
of Brazilians returned to the streets to protest reforms backed by
President Michel Temer's conservative government.
2017 Mar 31, In southern
Colombia mudslides late today claimed at least 16 lives and injured
some 65 people following recent torrential rains. The mudslides were
caused by the rise of the Mocoa River and three tributaries. On
April 7 Colombian officials formally abandoned the search for
survivors as the death toll stood at 314.
(AFP, 4/1/17)(AP, 4/2/17)(AFP, 4/5/17)(AP,
2017 Mar 31, In France hemmed
in and closely watched by police, hundreds of Muslims unrolled rugs
and mats and prayed outdoors in the busy streets of a Paris suburb
to protest the closure of their prayer hall.
2017 Mar 31, A German court
convicted a Moroccan-born man, identified only as Souhayl M. (19),
of raping a 90-year-old woman and sentenced him to 5 ½ years in
prison. The victim was attacked last October just after she visited
2017 Mar 31, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban said the Central European University (CEU) in Budapest,
founded by financier George Soros, had "cheated" in awarding its
diplomas and violated Hungarian laws. Hungarian scholars and
teaching organizations have come out in support of CEU, saying it
was one of the preeminent centers of thought in the country and
deserved to be saved.
2017 Mar 31, Japan's whaling
fleet returned home after killing 333 whales in the Antarctic,
achieving its goal for the second year under a revised research
2017 Mar 31, Hundreds of
Mongolians protested in Ulaanbaatar over the alleged theft of
government funds deposited in offshore accounts. Opposition
politicians and activists demanded the return of what some said is
$17 billion in funds plundered by ruling party politicians and their
2017 Mar 31, In Pakistan a
powerful car bomb exploded near a minority Shiite Muslim place of
worship in the northwest town of Parachinar, killing at least 24
people and wounding over 70 others. Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a breakaway
faction of Pakistani Taliban militants, claimed responsibility.
2017 Mar 31, Palestinian Hatem
al-Maghari returned overnight to his family in Gaza after 17 years
in an Israeli jail. He had been arrested and convicted of murder
after the brutal lynching of two Israeli soldiers in 2000, but was
released this week after new evidence emerged. He was still found
guilty of aggression against a soldier and not preventing an offence
and sentenced to 11 and a half years in prison, but with time
already served was released immediately.
2017 Mar 31, In Paraguay
protesters stormed and set fire to the Congress after the Senate
secretly voted for a constitutional amendment that would allow
President Horacio Cartes to run for re-election.
2017 Mar 31, Teachers across
Poland staged a strike to protest a sweeping overhaul of the
education system by the populist government that will see middle
schools eliminated this fall.
2017 Mar 31, Russian
prosecutors moved to block calls on social networks for more street
protests in Moscow and other Russian cities following a wave of
rallies that have cast a new challenge to the Kremlin.
2017 Mar 31, The Scottish
government formally asked British PM Theresa May for a second
referendum on independence, deepening a constitutional crisis
sparked by the Brexit vote.
2017 Mar 31, Somali pirates
seized an Indian cargo ship and 11 crew members. The "Al Kausar" is
the third vessel to be hijacked in less than a month off Somalia’s
2017 Mar 31, South Korea's
embattled former President Park Geun-hye was jailed in a scandal
that has set off a political firestorm and led to the arrests and
indictments of dozens of high-profile figures.
2017 Mar 31, The Stella Daisy
cargo ship being used by a South Korean shipping company went
missing in seas near Uruguay with 16 Filipino and 8 South Korean
crew members. Two Filipino sailors were rescued on April 1.
(AP, 4/1/17)(AFP, 4/2/17)
2017 Mar 31, Swedish
prosecutors investigating a suspected gang rape and its broadcast
via Facebook Live said they had received a copy of the footage from
the US social media company.
2017 Mar 31, Credit Suisse
issued a brief statement saying that local authorities had made
"visits" to its offices in Amsterdam, Paris and London in connection
with unspecified client tax issues. The European Union judicial
agency Eurojust said it had helped coordinate cross-border
investigations in a major tax evasion investigation involving
millions of euros and spanning several European countries and
(AP, 3/31/17)(Reuters, 3/31/17)
2017 Mar 31, In Turkey a court
in Istanbul released singer Atilla Tas and 20 others from jail
pending an outcome of their trial on terrorism charges. Five of them
will remain in prison while two of the defendants are at large and
being tried in absentia.
2017 Mar 31, In Turkey
Selahattin Demirtas, the jailed leader the pro-Kurdish People's
Democratic Party (HDP), said he has begun a hunger strike to protest
2017 Mar 31, Leaders of
Turkmenistan and Belarus attended the launch of a huge potash
fertilizer plant worth more than $1 billion. The plant in Garlyk,
built near huge potash deposits, was built by Belarus.
2017 Mar 31, Venezuelan
security forces violently repressed small protests that broke out in
Caracas after the government-stacked Supreme Court gutted congress
of its last vestiges of power, drawing widespread condemnation from
foreign countries and even from the government's top prosecutor.
2018 Mar 31, In the SF Bay Area
Richmond jail guard Patrick Morseman (26) walked into the jail cell
of two women and had oral sex and intercourse with both of them. One
of the women collected evidence using a feminine pad and handed it
to an attorney. Morseman was soon arrested and charged with four
(SFC, 4/24/19, p.C1)
2018 Mar 31, Utah's Mormon
church made history and brought diversity to its leadership panel by
selecting its first Latin American apostle and first apostle of
Asian ancestry to help set church policy and oversee the faith's
(SSFC, 4/1/18, p.A8)
2018 Mar 31, Protesters in
Albania burned down toll boxes and scuffled with police over the
country's first toll road.
2018 Mar 31, Botswana Pres. Ian
Khama (65), a retired army general, stepped down, handing the
diamond-rich country to his deputy Mokgweetsi Masisi (55) after a
decade at the helm.
2018 Mar 31, Britain's Anthony
Joshua was taken the distance for the first time in his professional
career before winning a unanimous points decision in his world
heavyweight title unification fight in Cardiff with Joseph Parker of
2018 Mar 31, In the Central
African Republic UN peacekeepers on patrol exchanged fire with
members of an armed group in the Muslim rebel bastion called PK5 in
2018 Mar 31, China anti-graft
watchdog said Feng Xinzhu, a former senior provincial official, will
be prosecuted for corruption after an investigation found he
illegally accepted gifts and abused his power.
2018 Mar 31, China's state news
said the government will spend 1.875 billion yuan ($298.92 million)
to improve irrigation systems in the heavily ethnic Uighur southern
part of the violence-prone far western region of Xinjiang.
2018 Mar 31, The Democratic
Republic of Congo's main opposition party chose Felix Tshisekedi,
the son of its founder and historic opposition figure, as its leader
and presidential candidate in long delayed polls due at the end of
2018 Mar 31, Ethiopia's state
media reported that more than 1,100 people have been arrested since
the nation declared a state of emergency following the prime
minister's resignation last month.
2018 Mar 31, Workers at
France's Carrefour supermarkets began striking to protest planned
job cuts. The strike caused disruptions at about 300 Carrefour
markets across the country.
2018 Mar 31, In Germany a bus
driver was killed and 18 other people were injured when the bus
drove into a truck on a Bavarian highway early today.
2018 Mar 31, In northern India
Lobsang Sangay, the prime minister of the self-declared Tibetan
government-in-exile, urged his compatriots to strengthen efforts to
make the return of the Dalai Lama to his native land a reality.
2018 Mar 31, In central India a
four-story rickety hotel building collapsed in Indore, Madhya
Pradesh state, killing at least 10 people and injuring three. A
driver lost control of his vehicle and struck a pillar holding up
the near 100-year-old structure.
(AP, 4/1/18)(AFP, 4/1/18)
2018 Mar 31, In Indonesia four
people died after fuel from an oil spill caught fire, filling skies
around Balikpapan city on Borneo island with choking black smoke. A
cracked underwater pipeline was later said to have caused the oil
spill (see April 5).
(AP, 4/4/18)(Reuters, 4/4/18)
2018 Mar 31, An Iranian news
site reported that the country will block the Telegram messenger
service for reasons of national security. Officials said the app
would be replaced by a similar local system.
2018 Mar 31, Israeli troops
fired warning shots toward Palestinian youths gathered at the
Gaza-Israel border, wounding 13 people. Palestinian President
Mahmoud Abbas declared a national day of mourning and a general
strike was called across the occupied West Bank.
2018 Mar 31, Japanese whaling
vessels returned to port after catching 333 minke whales in the
Antarctic Ocean without facing protests by anti-whaling groups.
2018 Mar 31, Authorities in
Mali handed over jihadist leader Al Hassan Ag Abdoul Aziz Ag Mohamed
Ag Mahmoud to the International Criminal Court for prosecution on
war crimes charges committed in Timbuktu while the town was under
the control of extremists between April 2012 and January 2013.
2018 Mar 31, Thousands of
Mongolians protested in front of parliament in Ulaanbaatar to demand
more action to prevent child abuse, after the widely-reported rape
of a male infant shocked the country.
2018 Mar 31, Moscow's Tverskoy
District Court said on that the co-owner of Russia's Summa group,
Ziyavudin Magomedov, and his associates are suspected of embezzling
more than 2 billion rubles ($35.01 million), including from the
state budget. Magomedov and two of his business partners had been
2018 Mar 31, Moscow said it has
told Britain it must cut "just over 50" more of its diplomatic and
technical staff in Russia in a worsening standoff over the poisoning
of a Russian former spy and his daughter in England.
2018 Mar 31, In Russia
Ziyavudin Magomedov (49), who is worth $1.4 billion according to the
Russian Forbes magazine, was arrested along with his brother after a
court refused to release him on bail of 2.5 billion rubles ($44
million), the sum police say he embezzled from government
infrastructure contracts. He was involved in the construction of one
of the stadiums to be used in this summer's World Cup.
2018 Mar 31, Saudi air defenses
intercepted a missile fired by Yemeni rebels at the kingdom's
southern city of Najran.
2018 Mar 31, Sierra Leone voted
in a poll delayed by fraud allegations to choose a successor to
President Ernest Bai Koroma who leaves a country still struggling
after the Ebola epidemic. Opposition candidate Julius Maada Bio won
51.8 percent beating ruling party candidate Samura Kamara, who
received 48.2 percent.
(Reuters, 3/31/18)(SFC, 4/5/18, p.A2)
2018 Mar 31, South Korea said
it has deployed a naval vessel from its regional anti-piracy effort
to help in the search after a fishing boat was hijacked by pirates
2018 Mar 31, Some of South
Korea's biggest pop stars flew to North Korea for rare performances
that highlight the sudden thaw in inter-Korean ties after years of
tensions over the North's nuclear ambitions.
2018 Mar 31, In Switzerland
three Spanish skiers died and two were injured when an avalanche
swept them down a mountainside in the southwestern canton of Valais.
2018 Mar 31, Syrian state media
reported that the last group of opposition fighters and their
relatives are getting ready to leave southern parts of eastern
Ghouta. Negotiations were still ongoing with the Army of Islam rebel
group to leave Douma.
2018 Mar 31, Venezuelan
authorities said five police commanders have been arrested,
suspected of bearing responsibility for a deadly fire in a state
police headquarters jail that killed 68 people.
2018 Mar 31, In Vietnam the
leaders of six countries along the Mekong River adopted an ambitious
investment plan worth $66 billion over the next five years. The
summit included the prime ministers of Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and
Vietnam, as well as a vice president of Myanmar and the Chinese
2018 Mar 31, In Yemen a massive
fire broke out and engulfed storage facilities belonging to the
World Food Program in the Red Sea port city of Hodeida damaging
humanitarian aid inside.
2019 Mar 31, In southern
California rapper Nipsey Hussle (33) (born as Ermias Asghedom) was
shot and killed outside his clothing store in South Los Angeles. Two
other people were wounded. The suspected shooter fled the scene. On
April 2 police arrested suspect Eric Holder (29) in Bellflower.
(SFC, 4/1/19, p.A6)(SFC, 4/3/19, p.A7)
2019 Mar 31, In Florida Mexican
soap opera actor Pablo Lyle (32) punched Juan Ricardo Hernandez (63)
in a road rage confrontation. Lyle initially faced only a battery
charge, but Hernandez later died in a hospital and Lyle was charged
2019 Mar 31, A top Algerian
businessman, Ali Haddad, was arrested overnight at an Algerian
border post as he was apparently trying to go to Tunisia amid
political crisis in the country. Haddad, long a backer of President
Abdelaziz Bouteflika, resigned this week as head of Algeria's
2019 Mar 31, Police in
Bangladesh arrested the F.R. Tower's owners Tasvir-ul-Islam and
S.M.H.I. Faruque overnight in Dhaka and charged them with negligence
and violations of a building code that resulted in the deaths of 26
2019 Mar 31, Brazil said it had
a opened a new diplomatic office in Jerusalem that would serve as
part of its embassy to Israel, which is located in Tel Aviv.
2019 Mar 31, In Brazil Rio de
Janeiro Gov. Wilson Witzel said in an interview that snipers were
already operating in the state. He said he would empower policemen
to shoot down any criminal seen carrying a rifle.
2019 Mar 31, The Canadian
Women's Hockey League said it will discontinue operations on May 1.
The CWHL was founded in 2007 with a mandate to increase interest in
2019 Mar 31, In eastern China
at least seven people were killed and five injured when a container
containing scrap metal exploded in the latest in a series of
2019 Mar 31, In China a fire
high in the mountains of western Sichuan province killed 30
firefighters and others.
2019 Mar 31, Police in
Colombia's second-largest city said they have arrested Thomas Renno
of California for allegedly offering cash over Facebook to girls as
young as 13 in exchange for sexual acts.
2019 Mar 31, In northeastern
Congo DRC voters in Beni and Butembo, towns ravaged by conflict and
an Ebola epidemic, took part in long-delayed elections. At stake
were 15 seats in the lower house of parliament, which counts 500
2019 Mar 31, In Germany Russian
airline S7 Group co-owner Natalia Fileva was aboard a single-engine,
six-seat Epic LT aircraft that crashed and burned in a field as it
approached the small airport at the town of Egelsbach near
Frankfurt. Three bodies were recovered in the crash.
2019 Mar 31, Fashion magazine
Vogue hit the newsstands in Greece, relaunched after a seven-year
absence as publishers bet that the country's economic recovery after
a debt crisis will revive an appetite for glossy fashion and
2019 Mar 31, Thousands of
protesters hit the streets of Hong Kong to demonstrate against a new
extradition proposal. Hong Kong's government has recently announced
plans to overhaul its extradition rules, allowing the transfer of
fugitives with Taiwan, Macau and mainland China on a "case-basis"
for the first time.
(Reuters, 3/31/19)(AFP, 4/1/19)
2019 Mar 31, It was reported
that air quality in Indonesia has deteriorated from among the
cleanest in the world to one of the most polluted over the past two
decades. A study blamed coal-fired power stations, burning land for
agriculture and rising car ownership.
(SSFC, 3/31/19, p.A4)
2019 Mar 31, Iranian media said
a man has shot dead seven members of his wife's family in the
southwestern city of Dezful.
2019 Mar 31, Israel's PM
Benjamin Netanyahu warmly received President Jair Bolsonaro, on the
Brazilian leader's first state visit to Israel.
2019 Mar 31, Israel reopened
its commercial crossing with the Gaza Strip but kept military
reinforcements deployed on the volatile frontier, a day after a
smaller than expected Palestinian protest along the border.
Militants fired five rockets from Gaza into Israel early today.
(Reuters, 3/31/19)(AP, 3/31/19)
2019 Mar 31, In Italy several
tens of thousands of people marched in support of the
ultra-Conservative World Congress of Families, on the final day of
their conference in Verona.
2019 Mar 31, In Morocco Pope
Francis told Catholic priests and sisters that even though they are
few in number, they shouldn't seek to convert others to Christianity
but rather engage in dialogue and charity.
2019 Mar 31, In southern Nepal
a powerful rainstorm killed at least 28 people and injured hundreds
in a farming region in Bara and Parsa districts.
2019 Mar 31, Catholic priests
in Poland burned books they say are sacrilegious, including tomes
from British author J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series of fantasy
novels. Rev. Rafal Jarosiewicz apologized on April 2, saying the
ritual was not intended to condemn specific authors, religions or
(AFP, 4/1/19)(AP, 4/3/19)
2019 Mar 31, Somalia's
al-Shabab Islamic extremist group said it has executed four men
accused of spying for the British, Djibouti and Somali intelligence
2019 Mar 31, In Spain at least
50,000 people took to the streets of Madrid to draw attention to the
emptying of the countryside, a growing issue for rural voters with
less than a month to go before general elections.
2019 Mar 31, Sudanese security
forces fired tear gas at scores of protesters as they defied a
nationwide state of emergency to demonstrate in Khartoum, its twin
city Omdurman and other cities across the country.
(AFP, 3/31/19)(AP, 4/1/19)
2019 Mar 31, In northwest Syria
one Turkish soldier was killed and another was wounded in a mortar
attack on their position. Turkey's military launched retaliatory
fire. Turkey said the attack was carried out by the Kurdish YPG
militia in the Afrin region.
2019 Mar 31, Taiwan condemned
what it called a "provocative" move by China after two Chinese
fighter jets crossed a maritime border separating the two sides amid
growing friction between Taipei and Beijing.
2019 Mar 31, Thai demonstrators
protested against alleged cheating in the junta-ruled kingdom's
first election since a 2014 coup, a week after the controversial
poll sowed confusion over the ballot results.
2019 Mar 31, In Tunisia Arab
leaders, long divided by regional rivalries, condemned a US decision
to recognize Israel's sovereignty over the Golan Heights and said
Middle East stability depended on creating an Palestinian state.
2019 Mar 31, Turkey voted in
local elections in a test for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, with
his ruling party fighting to keep hold of the country's two key
cities as an economic slowdown takes hold. In eastern Turkey an
election observer and another man were killed in a fight at a
school-based polling station. Pres. Erdogan's AKP suffered a major
upset in the ballot after results showed they had lost not only the
capital Ankara and also the country's economic hub Istanbul.
(AFP, 3/31/19)(AFP, 4/1/19)
2019 Mar 31, Voters in Ukraine
cast ballots in a presidential election. Opinion polls have
indicated that Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who stars in a TV sitcom about a
teacher who becomes president after a video of him denouncing
corruption goes viral, was leading a field of 39 candidates. Police
say they have received more than 1,600 complaints about electoral
violations in the presidential election. Zelenskiy took 30 percent
support in the vote, while President Petro Poroshenko was a distant
second with about 16 percent. The top two candidates advance to a
runoff on April 21.
(AP, 3/31/19)(AP, 4/1/19)
2019 Mar 31, Ukraine police
seized heroin worth about $60 million, over half a ton of the
powder, in raids in the country's center and west, describing it as
the biggest haul they had ever seen.
2019 Mar 31, Venezuela's Pres.
Nicolas Maduro announced a 30-day plan to ration electricity
following nationwide power cuts.
(SFC, 4/1/19, p.A4)
2020 Mar 31, President Donald
Trump said the US Congress should pass a $2 trillion spending plan
to update the country's roads, bridges and other infrastructure,
calling for it to be included in the next bill lawmakers are
currently drafting to respond to the coronavirus crisis, which they
refer to as "Phase 4." Trump warned Americans to brace for a “hell
of a bad two weeks" ahead as the White House projected there could
be 100,000 to 240,000 deaths in the US from the coronavirus pandemic
even if current social distancing guidelines are maintained.
(Reuters, 3/31/20)(AP, 3/31/20)
2020 Mar 31, Pres. Donald
Trump's administration completed a rollback of vehicle emissions
standards adopted under his predecessor Barack Obama and will
require 1.5% annual increases in efficiency through 2026 - far
weaker than the 5% increases in the discarded rules.
2020 Mar 31, US officials said
the Trump administration is prepared to lift sanctions on Venezuela
in support of a new proposal to form a transitional government
representing allies of both Nicolas Maduro and opposition leader
Juan Guaido. The plan would require Maduro and Guaidó to step aside
and hand power to a five-member council of state to govern the
country until presidential and parliamentary elections can be held
in late 2020.
2020 Mar 31, The US, the
country with the most confirmed coronavirus infections, now reported
at 164,610 cases and over 3,000 deaths. More than 800,000 cases have
been recorded in 185 countries and territories since the epidemic
started in China in December. At least 38,464 deaths have been
recorded, 27,740 of those in Europe.
(AFP, 3/31/20)(AP, 3/31/20)
2020 Mar 31, US authorities
said a large haul of drugs, including opioids, methamphetamine and
cocaine, being smuggled from Mexico to California has been seized
from a cross-border tunnel equipped with ventilation, lighting and
an underground rail system. The 2,000-foot tunnel connected
warehouses in Tijuana and San Diego.
2020 Mar 31, TC Energy Corp.
gave the go-ahead for construction of its $8 billion Keystone XL
Pipeline project with assistance from the Alberta government. The
pipeline would transport up to 35 million gallons of crude oil daily
from western Canada to terminals on the US Gulf Coast.
(SFC, 4/1/20, p.A2)
2020 Mar 31, California's Gov.
Gavin Newsom reported 6,932 cases of coronavirus and 150 deaths in
(ABC News, 3/30/20)
2020 Mar 31, In southern
California venture capitalist Imaad Shah Zuberi (49), who
contributed $900,000 to President Donald Trump’s inaugural
committee, agreed to plead guilty to making almost $1 million in
illegal campaign contributions from 2012 to 2016. Zuberi also
admitted he hid his work for foreign nationals while he lobbied US
government officials and evaded paying taxes.
2020 Mar 31, In southern
California train engineer Eduardo Moreno (44) drove a speeding
locomotive off a track at the Port of Los Angeles because he was
suspicious about the presence of the Navy hospital ship Mercy docked
there to help during the coronavirus crisis.
2020 Mar 31, Two ships carrying
passengers and crew from an ill-fated South American cruise pleaded
with Florida officials to let them carry off the sick and dead. But
Gov. Ron DeSantis said Florida’s health care resources are already
stretched too thin.
2020 Mar 31, In Idaho a
magnitude 6.5 earthquake struck north of Boise this evening, with
people across a large area reporting shaking.
2020 Mar 31, New York City
authorities rushed to bring in an army of medical volunteers as the
death toll in the city from the coronavirus climbed past 1,000.
2020 Mar 31, In Wisconsin a
jogger found the bodies of Dr. Beth Potter (52) and her husband
Rovin Carre (57) near the arboretum of the Univ. of Wisconsin.
Suspect Khari Sanford (18) was arrested on April 3. Police soon
arrested a 2nd suspect, Ali'jah Larrue (18).
(SFC, 4/7/20, p.A3)
2020 Mar 31, Privately held
Bodysphere said the US Food and Drug Administration has authorized
the emergency use of its test that can detect the coronavirus in
nearly two minutes.
2020 Mar 31, Southwest Airlines
Co said it will cut more than 40% of flights from May 3 through June
5 amid a sharp decline in travel demand from the coronavirus
2020 Mar 31, Afghan officials
said authorities have quarantined 16 health workers, including six
doctors, as Afghans fleeing hard-hit Iran have helped spread the
coronavirus in the western border province of Herat.
2020 Mar 31, Africa's confirmed
cases of coronavirus climbed to at least 5,300, with more than 170
recorded deaths. The Nigerian cities of Lagos and Abuja entered a
two-week lockdown to stop the spread of the virus.
2020 Mar 31, In Bangladesh
orders for businesses to close due to the coronavirus pandemic went
into effect. Garment factories were not included until four days
(Econ., 5/2/20, p.28)
2020 Mar 31, Belgium had at
least 12,775 diagnosed cases of COVID-19, and at least 705 of those
patients have died, including a girl (12) who succumbed to the
disease over the weekend.
2020 Mar 31, Botswana President
Mokgweetsi Masisi declared a State of Emergency following three
confirmed coronavirus cases.
2020 Mar 31, Brazil's President
Jair Bolsonaro called for a pact against the coronavirus "to save
lives without leaving jobs behind." Brazil had 1210 deaths from the
(Economist, 4/4/20, p.26)
2020 Mar 31, The death toll in
England from the coronavirus outbreak rose 29% to 1,651. Scotland
said 60 people had died. Wales said 69 people had died.
2020 Mar 31, Air Canada
announced it will temporarily lay off nearly half of its employees
-- affecting some 15,200 staff and about 1,300 managers -- and
reduce activity by up to 90 percent.
2020 Mar 31, European nations
deliver medical goods to Iran in the first transaction under the
Instex mechanism set up in January 2019 to bypass United States
sanctions on Tehran.
2020 Mar 31, The EU announced
the launch of a new naval mission in the Mediterranean Sea aimed at
enforcing the UN arms embargo on Libya.
(SFC, 4/1/20, p.A2)
2020 Mar 31, Guinea announced a
night-time curfew between 2100-0500 GMT and restrictions on movement
out of the capital due to the coronavirus pandemic.
2020 Mar 31, Indonesia said it
will ban foreign nationals from entering the country as the world’s
fourth-most populous country stepped up efforts to contain the
spread of the coronavirus pandemic. The government has also ordered
officials to step up screening of Indonesian workers returning from
overseas to prevent the virus from spreading further.
2020 Mar 31, Iran said 141 more
people have died from the novel coronavirus, raising the official
toll to 2,898. Some 3,111 new infections have been confirmed over
the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 44,606. State news said
authorities have stopped the print editions of all Iranian media
until at least April 8, calling on them to publish online instead.
2020 Mar 31, In Italy the death
toll from an outbreak of coronavirus in the northern region of
Lombardy rose by around 381 in a day to some 7,199. The daily deaths
marked the lowest daily toll since March 25.
2020 Mar 31, Kenya now has 59
coronavirus cases, including one death from the disease. A family
mourned the death of a boy (13), struck by a bullet as he stood on
the balcony of his family’s home with his siblings. Police officers
had moved through their crowded neighborhood, enforcing a new
coronavirus curfew. The director of public prosecutions ordered an
investigation into the fatal shooting in the slum of Mathare.
(AP, 3/31/20)(Reuters, 3/31/20)
2020 Mar 31, Mexico's
government broadened its shutdown of "non-essential activities" to
the private sector and prohibited gatherings of more than 50 people
to fight the spread of the coronavirus. The emergency measures will
be in effect to April 30.
(SFC, 4/1/20, p.A5)
2020 Mar 31, Gaza's Health
Ministry said two more cases have been confirmed among travelers who
returned from Egypt, bringing the number to 12. A UN aid agency
began delivering food to the homes of impoverished Palestinians
instead of making them pick up such parcels at crowded distribution
2020 Mar 31, Panama announced
strict quarantine measures that separate citizens by gender. From
April 1 for 15 days, men and women will only be able to leave their
homes for two hours at a time, and on different days.
2020 Mar 31, Russian lawmakers
backed jail sentences of up to seven years for quarantine offenders
as the number of cases jumped by a record daily amount. Over the
past 24 hours Russian authorities have reported 500 new cases -- the
biggest daily increase so far --- bringing the total tally to 2,337
cases and 17 fatalities.
(Reuters, 3/31/20)(AFP, 3/31/20)
2020 Mar 31, A senior Saudi
official urged more than 1 million Muslims intending to perform the
hajj to delay making plans this year, comments suggesting the
pilgrimage could be cancelled due to the new coronavirus pandemic.
2020 Mar 31, Sierra Leone
announced its first coronavirus case.
(SFC, 4/1/20, p.A5)
2020 Mar 31, South African
scientist Gita Ramjee died from Covid-19-related complications.
2020 Mar 31, Spain approved an
emergency measure designed to help domestic workers who have seen
their work hours reduced, temporarily suspended or been fired since
the country went into lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic. New
cases increased by 9,222 bringing the total to 94,417.
(Reuters, 3/31/20)(SFC, 4/1/20, p.A5)
2020 Mar 31, Sri Lanka the
coronavirus claimed its first Muslim victim. Hospital workers defied
the victim's family and had him cremated. The health ministry soon
issued new rules making it compulsory to cremate everyone who had
died of COVID-19.
(Econ., 1/2/21, p.26)
2020 Mar 31, Sweden recorded
4,947 infection of the coronavirus and 239 deaths.
(Economist, 4/4/20, p.41)
2020 Mar 31, Syrian state media
said government air defenses opened fire on missiles launched from
Israeli warplanes on the central province of Homs, shooting down
some of them. Israeli warplanes reportedly fired eight missiles at
the Shayrat air base in Homs province.
2020 Mar 31, In eastern Turkey
an explosion damaged a natural gas pipeline and halted gas flows
from Iran. Authorities suspected the Kurdistan Workers' Party.
(SFC, 4/1/20, p.A2)
2021 Mar 31, US Pres. Joe Biden
unveiled the details of his $2 trillion plan to repair and upgrade
the country’s infrastructure, calling it “a once-in-a-generation
investment in America".
(NY Times, 3/31/21)
2021 Mar 31, The United States
renewed a waiver allowing Iraq to pay for electricity imported from
Iran, this time giving Baghdad 120 days to reduce its energy
dependence on neighboring Tehran.
2021 Mar 31, The Pentagon swept
away Trump-era policies that largely banned transgender people from
serving in the military, issuing new rules that offer them wider
access to medical care and assistance with gender transition.
2021 Mar 31, The FDA said
Abbott’s BinaxNow and Quidel’s QuickVue COVID-19 tests can now be
sold without a prescription.
(AP, 4/1/21)(SSFC, 4/4/21, p.A9)
2021 Mar 31, In southern
California four people, including a child, were killed in a shooting
at an office building in Orange. Suspect Aminadab Gaxiola Gonzalez
(44) was hospitalized in critical condition with a gunshot wound. In
November a judge ruled that Gaxiola Gonzalez is not competent to
stand trial because of injuries he suffered in a shootout with
(NY Times, 3/31/21)(SFC, 4/2/21, p.A4)(SFC,
2021 Mar 31, California to
date had 3,644,616 cases of coronavirus and 58,769 deaths. The SF
Bay Area had 422,237 cases and 5,916 deaths. Total cases nationwide
reached over 30,452,058 with the death toll at 551,863.
2021 Mar 31, Georgia-based
Delta and Coca-Cola, expressed “crystal clear" opposition to the
state’s new law to restrict voting access.
(NY Times, 3/31/21)
2021 Mar 31, New Mexico's
Legislature approved the legalization of recreational marijuana for
adults 21 and older.
(SFC, 4/1/21, p.A5)
2021 Mar 31, New York Gov.
Andrew M. Cuomo signed into law a bill that will end the use of
long-term solitary confinement in prisons and jails.
(NY Times, 4/1/21)
2021 Mar 31, New York Gov.
Andrew Cuomo signed a bill allowing New Yorkers to possess and use
up to 3 ounces of cannabis. Sales of recreational-use marijuana
won’t become legal for an estimated 18 months until the state draws
2021 Mar 31, NYC police said
Brandon Elliot (38), a parolee convicted of killing his mother
nearly two decades ago, has been arrested on charges including
felony assault as a hate crime for attacking an Asian American woman
two days earlier near Times Square.
2021 Mar 31, It was reported
that dozens of Black business leaders, including the CEO of Merck
and the former head of American Express, urged corporations to fight
a wave of Republican-backed bills that would limit voting access.
(NY Times, 3/31/21)
2021 Mar 31, Apple Inc said
that it will build a battery-based renewable energy storage facility
in Central California near a solar energy installation that already
provides energy for all of its facilities in the state.
2021 Mar 31, Data firm IHS
Markit said a recent fire at a Japanese semiconductor factory and
severe weather in parts of the United States in February have
exacerbated an ongoing chip shortage plaguing the global auto
industry. The chip-making factory owned by Renesas Electronics Corp
accounts for 30% of the global market for microcontroller units used
2021 Mar 31, Johnson &
Johnson said a batch of its COVID-19 vaccine failed quality
standards and can’t be used. An ingredient made by Emergent
BioSolutions, one of about 10 companies that Johnson & Johnson
is using to speed up manufacturing of its recently approved vaccine,
did not meet quality standards. Emergent had to jettison between 13
million and 15 million doses of the J&J vaccine.
(AP, 3/31/21)(SFC, 4/8/21, p.A4)
2021 Mar 31, Pfizer said a
clinical trial had showed that its Covid vaccine was extremely
effective in 12- to 15-year-olds, with no symptomatic infections
among children who received it.
(NY Times, 3/31/21)
2021 Mar 31, It was reported
that Taliban envoys have requested the release of 7,000 prisoners
and the cancelling of UN sanctions, as they consider an American
request to keep troops in Afghanistan in the coming months.
(The Telegraph, 4/1/21)
2021 Mar 31, A Brussels court
ruled that the Belgian state should either lift all coronavirus
measures within 30 days or frame them properly as law.
2021 Mar 31, The Canadian
government said France-based Sanofi will build a $925 million flu
vaccine manufacturing facility in Toronto, creating 1,225 jobs and
boosting Canada's access to vaccines in the event of a flu pandemic.
2021 Mar 31, Diplomates said
the EU will target eight Iranian militia and police commanders and
three state entities with sanctions next week over a deadly
crackdown in November 2019 by Iranian authorities.
2021 Mar 31, The European
Medicines Agency says there is “no evidence" that would support
restricting use of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine in any
population despite reports of rare blood clots associated with the
shot. The Europe's drug regulator said it is investigating 62 cases
worldwide of a rare blood clotting condition which has prompted some
countries to limit the use of AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine.
(AP, 3/31/21)(Reuters, 3/31/21)
2021 Mar 31, President Emmanuel
Macron of France announced the start of a third national lockdown in
a desperate move to halt a new deadly wave.
(NY Times, 3/31/21)
2021 Mar 31, In Georgia an
angry mob laid siege late today to an upscale hotel in central
Tbilisi where Vladimir Pozner (87), a prominent Russian TV host, was
having dinner the night before his birthday. Several Georgian
politicians had insisted that the journalist was not welcome in
Georgia after he said in 2010 that people of the breakaway region of
Abkhazia do not seem to want to be part of Georgia.
(The Telegraph, 4/1/21)
2021 Mar 31, Italian secret
service agents backed by Carabinieri military police swooped in on a
clandestine meeting in a Roman parking garage early today just as an
Italian navy officer named as Walter Biot was handing a secret
dossier of Italian state secrets and classified NATO documents to a
Russian spy who had a reportedly paltry sum of €5,000 ($5,863) in
cash ready to swap for the documents.
(The Daily Beast, 3/31/21)
2021 Mar 31, Forces in western
Libya released more than 100 prisoners who had been captured while
fighting under the banner of the country's eastern-based Khalifa
Hifter, in a gesture of reconciliation following recent accords.
2021 Mar 31, In northern
Mozambique hundreds of militants stormed Palma, targeting shops,
banks and a military barracks. Dozens of people were reported dead
following the attack.
2021 Mar 31, At The Hague
International Criminal Court appeals judges upheld the acquittals of
former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo and former minister
Charles Ble Goude on charges of involvement in deadly post-election
2021 Mar 31, In Niger a unit
from a nearby air base tried to seize the presidential palace in
Niamey. The assailants were pushed back amid shelling and gunfire by
the presidential guard. Niger is the world's poorest nation.
2021 Mar 31, Qatar's cabinet
ordered a halt to non-urgent medical services at private health
facilities as of April 2 as coronavirus cases rise in the Gulf Arab
2021 Mar 31, Aleksei A.
Navalny, the imprisoned Russian opposition leader, declared a hunger
strike in protest over what he said was prison officials’ failure to
provide him with proper medical care for severe pain in his back and
his right leg.
(NY Times, 4/1/21)
2021 Mar 31, It was reported
that the Federation of St Kitts and Nevis and the Republic of Sri
Lanka formally established diplomatic relations last week.
2021 Mar 31, It was reported
that Syria’s Kurdish-led forces have arrested 71 suspected
militants, including a religious leader and a militant recruiter, in
an ongoing security sweep at a sprawling camp that houses families
and supporters of the Islamic State group.
2021 Mar 31, The World Health
Organization (WHO) recommended against using generic anti-parasite
drug ivermectin in patients with COVID-19 except for clinical
trials, because of a lack of data demonstrating its benefits.
2021 Mar 31, The UN's sexual
and reproductive health agency pushed international allies to
provide $26.7 million in funding that would go toward "life-saving
sexual and reproductive services and a multi-sectoral response to
gender-based violence" in Venezuela.
2021 Mar 31, The UN special
envoy for Myanmar warned that the country faces the possibility of
civil war “at an unprecedented scale" and urged the UN Security
Council to consider “potentially significant action" to reverse the
Feb. 1 military coup and restore democracy.