Timeline: 1990

Jan 3  In Panama, Manuel Noriega leaves the Holy See embassy and surrenders to US forces. He is put on a military transport plane and flown to the United States.

Jan 22  The New York Times reports that at least 2,500 Mongolians have defied a ban on demonstrations by demanding human rights and other concessions from the country's Communist government. "The police made no attempt to break up the illegal demonstration, and the Government announced that it would officially recognize the group that organized the protest."

Jan 29  In Anchorage, Alaska, the trial of Joseph Hazelwood, former skipper of the Exxon Valdez, begins.

Jan 31  Moscow, Russia, a McDonald's restaraurant opens.

Feb 10  In South Africa, President F.W. de Klerk announces Nelson Mandela's release from prison.

Feb 15  Britain and Argentina restore diplomatic relations, broken in 1982 at the beginning of the Falklands War.

President F.W. de Klerk and Nelson Mandela

President F.W. de Klerk and freed prisoner, Nelson Mandela.

Feb 26  In Nicaragua the Sandinistas are defeated in the free elections they had promised. A coalition of parties wins. Violeta Barrios de Chamorro is to replace Daniel Ortega as president of Nicaragua.

Mar 11  As a result of elections in Chile in December, a Christian-Democrat, Patricio Aylwin, takes office, replacing Augusto Pinochet as president, the first democratically elected president since 1970. Pinochet loses much of his power but remains Commander of Chief of the Army until March 1998.

Mar 11  Lithuania's Parliament votes to secede from the Soviet Union, a move supported by Lithuania's Communist Party, which has already declared itself independent from Moscow.

Mar 12  Estonians call on the United Nations to restore Estonia's freedom and independence.

Mar 14  Mikhail Gorbachev, now president of the Soviet Union, declares Lithuania's declaration of independence "illegitimate and invalid."

Mar 15 In Mongolia, Communist leaders respond to a growing democracy movement and propose free elections.

Mar 18  East Germany holds its first free elections since 1932.

Mar 20  In the Philippines the widow of Ferdinand Marcos, Imelda Marcos, goes on trial for embezzlement and racketeering.

Mar 21  After 75 years of rule by its neighbor, South Africa, Namibia becomes independent.

Mar 25  In the US, Vice President Dan Quayle says that the Soviet Union is justified in rounding up Lithuanians who have deserted from the Soviet Union's army, but he speaks with disapproval of the Soviet Union acting against Lithuania's independence movement.

Mar 27  In Vilnius Lithuania, armed Soviet troops storm a psychiatric hospital and arrest about two dozen Lithuanian deserters who have taken refuge there.

Mar 28  White House Press Secretary, Marlin Fitzwater, reiterates the Bush administration's call for negotiations between Lithuania and Moscow. On this issue the Democratic Speaker of the House, Tom Foley, agrees.

President Violeta Chomorro

President Chamorro of Nicaragua beginning April 25, 1990

Mar 31  In Lithuania, Soviet forces take control of the State Prosecutor's Office and seize the printing plant where the republic's main independence newspapers are printed.

Apr 1  To curb the demonstrations that have continued since February, the government of Nepal closes all high schools in the capital, Kathmandu, and two suburbs.

Apr 3  In Kathmandu, police shoot at demonstrators, killing five and wounding seventeen.

Apr 6  In Kathmandu a general strike begins. King Birendra appoints a new prime minister to negotiate with leaders of the pro-democracy movement.

Apr 13  In an effort to end a four-day political stalemate, King Birendra invites the leader of Nepal's opposition to join him in direct talks.

Apr 13  The Soviet Union apologizes for the Katyn Massacre, which occurred in 1941 as the Russians were pulling back from Germany's invasion.

May 4  Latvia declares independence from the Soviet Union.

May 17  The World Health Organization removes homosexuality from its list of diseases.

Jun 1  US President George H. W. Bush and Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev sign a treaty to end chemical weapons production and to destroy chemical weapon stock piles.

Jun 1  Members of the Provisional Irish Republican Army murder Major Michael Dillon-Lee in front of his home in Dortmund, Germany, and they murder Private William Robert Davies of the British Army at a railway station in Lichfield, England.

Jun 26  President Bush breaks his 1988 "no new taxes" campaign pledge, accepting tax revenue increases to reduce the budget deficit.

Jul 2  In Mecca a stampede in a pedestrian tunnel kills 1,426 Muslim pilgrims. The Saudi king, Fahd, describes it as "God's will.''

Jul 6  A videotaped image of US Lieutenant Colonel William R. Higgins, kidnapped in Lebanon in 1988, has been released by his captors showing him hanged by the neck. Exactly when he died is unknown, but today he is declared dead.

Kuwait City

Kuwait City. Kuwait is invaded by Suddam Hussain in August.

Jul 24  Tens of thousands of Iraqi troops deploy to Iraq's border with Kuwait.

Jul 25  US diplomat April Glaspie meets with Saddam Hussein. She speaks of US disapproval of settling disputes by violence but that the US has "no opinion" of his border disagreement with Kuwait.

Jul 27  Belarus declares its sovereignty, a step toward independence from the Soviet Union.

Jul 30  The Provision Irish Republican Army is still acting as police in Catholic neighborhoods in Northern Ireland -- in areas left unpoliced by the British – striking against drug dealers and criminals of various sorts. And they are still engaged in terrorism in England. A car bomb planted by army members kills a conservative member of parliament, Ian Gow.

Aug 1  In Mongolia the Communist Party has just won a majority in legislative elections in which opposition parties participated. Seeking wide support for a new government, Mongolia's Communist Party chairman says he will invite opposition groups to join the government.

Aug 2  Iraq invades Kuwait.

Aug 5  Referring to Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, President Bush announces that "This will not stand."

Aug 6  The United Nations Security Council orders a global trade embargo against Iraq.

Aug 4  The McMartin Pre-School child molestation case, the longest and most expensive criminal proceeding in American history, comes to an official end. All charges are dropped. The case was the result of inept psychologists and an inept district attorney and prosecuters.

Aug 18  Verdicts are in on the trial of the Central Park Five trial that began on June 13. The verdicts: guilty. Sentences for the teenagers are 5-15 years imprisonment. Some wanted the death penalty. The trial is a miscarriage of justice, with testimony from police interrogators that are lies. All charges are to be vacated on December 19, 2002.

Aug 24  Brian Keenan, from Northern Ireland, who was kidnapped in 1986 while teaching at the American University of Beirut, is released to Syrian military forces and then to Ireland's ambassador. The British and American governments would not negotiate on Keenan's behalf. The Republic of Ireland did, working closely with the Iranian government.

Sep 11  Gulf War: President George H. W. Bush delivers a nationally televised speech in which he threatens the use of force to remove Iraqi soldiers from Kuwait.

Sep19  The Provisional Irish Republican Army tries to assassinate Air Chief Marshal Sir Peter Terry at his home near Stafford, England. Terry is hit by at least 9 bullets but survives.

Oct 3  East Germany and West Germany unify politically into a single Germany. By now, KGB agent Vladimir Putin has been transferred from East Germany back to the Soviet Union.

Oct 13  In Lebanon, Prime Minister and acting President of one of two rival governments, Michel Aoun, has lost the support of Saddam Hussein, who is busy. It is to be alleged that in exchange for joining a coalition against Saddam Hussein, the US has promised the Syrians that Israel would not attack their aircraft. The Syrians oust Aoun from power, consolidating their 14-year presence in Lebanon, with Israel holding onto a security zone in southern Lebanon. Aoun will go into exile to France, after complaining that the United States had "sold Lebanon to Syria."

Oct 15  Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his reforms and for reducing Cold War tensions.

Nov 5  In New York, Rabbi Meir Kahane, founder of the far-right Kach movement, is shot dead. The leading suspect in the murder is El Sayyid Nosair, an Egyptan born US citizen associated with Islamic extremists.

Nov 8  Pesident Bush announces that he is increasing US forces in Saudi Arabia to 400,000 for adequate manpower to liberate Kuwait.

Nov 12  His father, Hirohito, dead for now for 22 months, Prince Akihito is enthroned as Japan's 125th emperor.

Nov 13  The first known page to appear on the World Wide Web (the internet) is written.

Nov 14  Germany and Poland sign a treaty confirming the border between them at the Oder-Neisse line.

Jean-Bertrand Aristide

Jean-Bertrand Aristide,
elected President of Haiti

Nov 28  John Major succeeds Margaret Thatcher as leader of the Conservative Party. Margaret Thatcher resigns as Prime Minister. Despite her conservatism she leaves office without having abolished Britain's health care services, but she did initiate management reforms.

Nov 29  The United Nations Security Council passes Resolution 678, authorizing members to use all necessary force to expel Iraqi forces from Kuwait if Iraq does not withdraw its forces from Kuwait and free all foreign hostages by January 15.

Dec 3  Mary Robinson becomes Ireland's first woman president.

Dec 7  Bulgaria's prime minister, Andrey Lukanov, a member of the reformist wing of Bulgaria's Communist Party, resigns after two weeks of anti-Communist demonstrations by striking workers.

Dec 16  Jean-Bertrand Aristide is elected president of Haiti, ending three decades of military rule.

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