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Encyclopedia > August 2003

2003 : January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December

A timeline of events in the news for August, 2003.

See also:

August 31, 2003

  • Tens of thousands of people turn out in Baghdad for the funeral procession of the murdered Shia Muslim leader Ayatollah Sayed Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim. [1] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3195163.stm) The Iraqi police handling the investigation say they have arrested 19 men in connection with the blast, many of them foreigners and all with admitted links to al-Qaeda. [2] (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/02/24/iraq/main541815.shtml)
  • The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency declassifies carbon dioxide as a pollutant, a move seen as leading to the elimination of restrictions on industrial emissions of the controversial gas. Climate scientists have debated carbon dioxide's role in global warming for over a decade, with most voices (though notably fewer within the US) calling it the biggest factor, while others call it negligible. [3] (http://news.independent.co.uk/world/americas/story.jsp?story=438719)
  • Occupation of Iraq: American and Iraqi officials are discussing the possibility of forming a large Iraqi militia or paramilitary force to help improve security in the country. [4] (http://www.theledger.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20030831/ZNYT03/308310472)
  • Terrorist: Terrorism group Jemaah Islamiyah has schemes, revealed in a 40_page manifesto (the Pupji book or General Guide to the Struggle of Jemaah Islamiyah), for a suicide bombing campaign designed to change Asia and the Pacific region into constitution, rules of operation, and leadership structure. [5] (http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,7128251%255E401,00.html)
  • Afghanistan: Soldiers are killed in a remote region (near the town of Shkin) near the Pakistani border. Taliban reinforcements moved into mountainous region in southern Afghanistan where U.S. and Afghan forces have been attacking hideouts in a battle over the past week. [6] (http://abcnews.go.com/wire/World/ap20030831_539.html)

August 30, 2003

  • Software patents: After protests, the European Parliament has postponed its decision about legality of patents on software in the European Union from September 1st to September 22nd. [7] (http://www.spiegel.de/spiegel/0,1518,263716,00.html)
  • WTO deal to allow poor countries to bypass drug patents and import cheap copies to treat AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis. [8] (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A5381-2003Aug30.html)
  • Natural disaster: French official first report from the Institut de Veille Sanitaire was presented to Jean-François Mattei (Health Minister). It reports 11,500 more deaths than the previous three years would be due to the heat wave of early August. It had previously been suggested that the number was 3,000.
  • Russian nuclear submarine of K-159 November class sinks in the Barents Sea. The sub was decommissioned and it had 10 crew on board. The incident comes three years after Russia's worst peacetime naval disaster when all 118 crew of the nuclear submarine Kursk died when it sank in the Barents Sea on August 12 2000. Environmental organizations say that the submarine could be dangerous for fishes, because radioactive material could leak to the sea from its two nuclear reactors. [9] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/3193625.stm)

August 29, 2003

  • Najaf, Iraq: A car bomb explodes during prayers outside the holiest shrine for Shiites, Imam Ali Mosque (Tomb of Ali), just as main weekly prayers are ending. More than 125 people are killed, including the influential cleric Ayatollah Sayed Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim, the Shiite leader of the Israel is alleged to have contingency plans to bomb an Iranian nuclear power plant if it begins producing weapons grade material. [16] (http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_814399.html)
  • Tensions flare again over the main religious site in Jerusalem, the location of both the Temple Mount and the Noble Sanctuary. The holy site had been closed to non-Muslims since September 2000. Israeli officials say they are maintaining calm over a site sacred to three religions. But Muslim authorities say the Israeli government is risking a backlash here and throughout the Muslim world. [17] (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=68&ncid=68&e=4&u=/nyt/20030829/ts_nyt/jerusalemholysiteatensecrossroadsagain)
  • Occupation of Iraq: General in Iraq says more soldiers are not needed. The American Coalition commander encouraged Muslim allies like Pakistan to send peacekeepers and said accelerating the training of a new Iraqi army should be considered. [18] (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=68&ncid=68&e=6&u=/nyt/20030829/ts_nyt/generaliniraqsaysmoregisarenotneeded)
  • Tony Blair's communications director, Alastair Campbell, resigns, leaving Blair with none of the three key players he has relied on for the last decade left. [19] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/3191937.stm) [20] (http://politics.guardian.co.uk/labour/story/0,9061,1031837,00.html)
  • The Inuit of Labrador sign an agreement with the Canadian federal government, giving them self-government in a 72,500 sq.km. region of northern Labrador called Nunatsiavut. _ [21] (http://www.globeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20030829.winuit/BNStory/National/)
  • Sage may help combat Alzheimer's disease. Study finds chemical in the herb improves memory. The study was conducted to verify herbalists writings centuries ago. [22] (http://www.msnbc.com/news/958833.asp?0cv=HA00)
  • Surgeons in Baltimore, Maryland remove a woman's heart, rebuild its upper chambers from bovine and human tissue, and reinstall it in her body.[23] (http://www.healthcentral.com/news/NewsFullText.cfm?id=1502664)
  • Congressman William J. Janklow, the only Representative from the state of South Dakota, is charged with vehicular manslaughter for an accident on August 16 in which Janklow's speeding car ran a stop sign and hit and killed a motorcyclist.[24] (http://www.bismarcktribune.com/articles/2003/08/30/news/state/sta01.txt)

August 28, 2003

  • 9/11: Nearly two years after the September 11th attack on the World Trade Center, transcripts of United Kingdom - London blackout: A 34 minute power outage causes major disruptions in rail and Tube services in London and the South East when one of the National Grid circuits that feeds south London fails at about 6.15 pm. [30] (http://www.sky.com/skynews/article/0,,30100-1101931,00.html)
  • Nuclear program: North Korea announces that it is in possession of nuclear weapons, has the means to deliver them, and will soon be carrying out a nuclear test to demonstrate this capability. [31] (http://www.cnn.com/2003/WORLD/asiapcf/east/08/28/nkorea.talks/), [32] (http://www.canada.com/news/world/story.asp?id=9AED176F-099D-457A-91BB-E14CD4713A69), [33] (http://breakingnews.iol.ie/news/story.asp?j=78640634&p=7864y34x), [34] (http://abcnews.go.com/wire/World/ap20030828_983.html)
  • Archaeology: Archaeologists have determined how big the triangle-shaped log enclosure was at Jamestown, Virginia when it was founded in 1607. [35] (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/ap/jamestown_fort)

August 27, 2003

  • Astronomy: Mars passes Earth at a distance of under 55.76 million kilometers, the closest it has been in approximately 60,000 years [36] (http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/08/23/1061529376531.html) [37] (http://www.space.com/spacewatch/where_is_mars.html)
  • Private Jessica Lynch, whose rescue from an Iraqi hospital has been surrounded by controversy, is honourably discharged from the United States Army National Guard.
  • Occupation of Iraq: According to a USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll, nearly two-thirds (63%) of Americans polled say the war in Iraq was worth fighting. [38] (http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/iraq/2003-08-27-poll-usat_x.htm)
  • Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat calls on militant groups to reinstate a ceasefire they formally ended last week after a Israeli gunships. [39] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle-east/3184671.stm)
  • Separation of church and state: The controversial Ten Commandments monument in Alabama's Supreme Court building is removed from public view, following a court order stating that the monument's location in the court building breaches the separation of church and state. The monument, nicknamed Roy's Holy Rock, was installed two years ago by the conservative Christian Chief Justice Americans approve of the federal court order under which workers removed the Ten Commandments monument from the rotunda of Alabama's state judicial building Wednesday, according to a new poll. [42] (http://www.cnn.com/2003/LAW/08/27/ten.commandments/index.html)
  • Crime: Seven people, including the gunman, are killed in a shooting in Chicago as a worker opens fire on his colleagues at a car parts store. The police shoot the gunman dead. [43] (http://www.sky.com/skynews/article/0,,30000-1101806,00.html)
  • Crime: A painting by Leonardo da Vinci, the Madonna with the Yarnwinder is stolen from Drumlanrig Castle in Scotland, the home of the Duke of Buccleuch.
  • Crime: A body of a woman is found in a shallow grave on a beach near Dundalk in the Republic of Ireland. It is suspected to be the body of Jean McConville, a young Belfast woman and mother of ten children kidnapped and murdered by the Provisional IRA in the mid 1970s. The IRA had suggested two years ago that McConville was buried in the vicinity. Previous attempts to find her remains had failed. [44] (http://www.rte.ie/news/2003/0827/remains.html)
  • Crime: Two bombs explode at the Emeryville, California corporate offices of Chiron (corporation); electronic mail sent to reporters from Revolutionary Cells claims responsibility.

August 26, 2003

  • War on Terrorism: President Bush, speaking to American Legion veterans convention, defends the Iraq policy, declaring the United States had hit terrorism in overthrowing the government of Saddam Hussein. President Bush vows "no retreat" from Iraq. President Bush also states that the United States may carry out other pre-emptive strikes. [45] (http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/26/politics/26CND-BUSH.html?ex=1062561600&en=a67d20396725c83f&ei=5062&partner=GOOGLE) [46] (http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml;jsessionid=5US0G1FK0PWPECRBAELCFEY?type=topNews&storyID=3340445) [47] (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/08/26/politics/main570110.shtml) [48] (http://www.msnbc.com/news/957431.asp?0si=-) [49] (http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2003-08-26-bush-speech_x.htm)
  • Space Shuttle program: Columbia Accident Investigation Board (CAIB) releases 200 page final dossier over the space shuttle Columbia's destruction (and the death of its seven astronauts). It states the cause is from NASA's cultural traits, lack of funds, and insufficient safety program. [50] (http://www.caib.us/news/report/default.html) [51] (http://www.cnn.com/2003/TECH/space/08/26/sprj.colu.shuttle.report/index.html) [52] (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/08/26/columbia/main570101.shtml) [53] (http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2003-08-26-shuttle-report_x.htm)
  • Technology: California Supreme Court rules that publishers could be barred from posting DVD descrambling code (DeCSS) online without infringing on free speech rights. [54] (http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/6/32482.html) [55] (http://www.businessweek.com/technology/cnet/stories/5067665.htm)
  • O. J. Simpson, giving an interview to Playboy, states that he is still innocent, but says "dream team" lawyers saved him. Without the money to pay for a "dream team" of lawyers, he says he would not have prevailed by being acquitted. In the interview, he also states that after his acquittal he smoked marijuana to get to sleep. [56] (http://www.playboy.com/magazine/interview.html) [57] (http://www.nbc30.com/news/2433282/detail.html) [58] (http://www.ajc.com/news/content/news/0803/26ojay.html) [59] (http://u.redlandsdailyfacts.com/Stories/0,1413,217~24250~1585969,00.html)
  • Former British Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath is flown home from his holiday in Salzburg, Austria to receive treatment in London for pulmonary embolism. [60] (http://www.guardian.co.uk/guardianpolitics/story/0,3605,1029928,00.html)

August 25, 2003

  • Two explosions, apparently caused by India. It is the sixth bombing in Mumbai in a year. [61] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/3178893.stm)
  • In Australia's One Nation Party case, it has been revealed that Federal Cabinet Minister Tony Abbott controlled "slush funds" which were used to lay the groundwork for party leader Pauline Hanson's prosecution, and to guarantee a private lawsuit against the party. [62] (http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/08/25/1061663736939.html). Liberal ranks split as Abbot's colleague Bronwyn Bishop joined many Labor MP's in calling for disclosure of his role in the case, and described Hanson as a "political prisoner". Remarkably, the nearly defunct One Nation Party's support surged to 21% on news of Hanson's imprisonment. [63] (http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/08/25/1061663736886.html)
  • The Tli Cho land claims agreement is signed in Canada's Northwest Territories. It grants the Dogrib people self-government in an area the size of Belgium. [64] (http://www.cbc.ca/stories/2003/08/25/landclaim030825)
  • Pete Sampras announces his retirement from competitive tennis.
  • Two Iranian intelligence officers are charged in connection with the death of Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi. [65] (http://www.cbc.ca/stories/2003/08/25/kazemi_charges030825)

August 24, 2003

August 23, 2003

  • In an unprecedented move, the British government submit thousands of official documents (many of which would not normally be seen by the public for 30 years) to the Hutton Inquiry, and publication on the Internet. [68] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/3176329.stm)[69] (http://www.the-hutton-inquiry.org.uk/)
  • Natural disaster: Canada, destroying more than 200 homes. 30,000 people, or one-third of the city's population, have been evacuated.[70] (http://globeandmail.ca/servlet/story/RTGAM.20030823.wfire0823_3/BNStory/Front/)
  • Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Palestinian leaders state they will try to negotiate a new ceasefire by extremist groups and urge Israel to stop their action against top militants. [71] (http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2003-08-23-mideast_x.htm) [72] (http://www.voanews.com/article.cfm?objectID=D639B5D4-B2CF-4945-9121D505F1B3004B)
  • Power outage happens all of Southern Finland for 30 to 60 minutes, because one underground line in Central Helsinki short circuits. The lack of electricity begins at 20:20 and causes radio broadcasts, public lights, elevators, trains, trams and metro traffic to stop. Also people have to be evacuated in Linnanmäki amusement park.[73] (http://www.helsinginsanomat.fi/tuoreet/artikkeli/1061299237915) [74] (http://www.mtv3.fi/uutiset/kotimaa/arkisto.shtml?2003/08/182357)
  • California recall: Republican Iran makes protest and cuts diplomatic ties with Britain of its former ambassador with the United Kingdom and Argentina for the alleged bombing Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires in 1994 in which 85 people died. [76] (http://www.voanews.com/article.cfm?objectID=CF915034-AD78-4D66-AFC45C3A0EA9C36D)[77] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/3177099.stm)
  • John Geoghan, a defrocked Roman Catholic priest and convicted child molester, dies following an attack in prison. Initial reports say that he was strangled to death.[78] (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/07/30/national/main565770.shtml) [79] (http://www.cnn.com/2003/US/08/23/geoghan/) [80] (http://abcnews.go.com/wire/US/ap20030823-985.html)

August 22, 2003

  • A Brazilian Space Agency VLS-1 space rocket explodes on its launch-pad at Alcantara space base, killing at least 21 people. It is thought that one of the rocket's four motors caught fire; the subsequent explosion destroyed the rocket, its cargo of two satellites, and the launch-pad, as well as the deaths of many of Brazil's space-specialists, causing an estimated US$12m worth of damage. This ends Brazil's third attempt since 1997 at becoming a space power. [81] (http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml;jsessionid=LD3YB2PO413JUCRBAEKSFFA?type=topNews&storyID=3324417)[82] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/3175131.stm)
  • Natural disaster: Ecuador's Tungurahua volcano sends a column of smoke and ash three kilometres into the air. [83] (http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,7030468%255E1702,00.html)
  • Natural disaster: Canada's worst fire season in decades. [84] (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=585&ncid=585&e=2&u=/nm/20030822/sc_nm/environment_fires_canada_dc)
  • Occupation of Iraq: United Nations Iraq. France, Russia, People's Republic of China, and Germany are proposing differing ways to expand the United Nations mandate in Iraq beyond humanitarian aid and reconstruction. Secretary of State of the United States Colin Powell states that there is no plan to cede authority to the United Nations from the Coalition forces. [85] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle-east/3172819.stm) Powell also sought a new Security Council resolution that would involve other nations to contribute troops and aid in securing and rebuilding Iraq. [86] (http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/22/international/worldspecial/22NATI.html?ex=1062129600&en=fbcb6dd5ee328053&ei=5062&amp)
  • War on Terrorism - Canal Hotel: Investigators focus on the possibility that former Iraqi intelligence agents working as security guards may have assisted the attack. [87] (http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/iraq/2003-08-22-us-soldiers-killed_x.htm)
  • Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Palestinian militants and the Israeli Government vow to continue attacks on each other after the terrorist attacks and bloodshed. Hamas and Islamic Jihad release an official joint statement on their participation ending in the peace plan. [88] (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle-east/3173107.stm) They urge militant cells in Palestine to strike. Israeli security officials state this is "only the beginning" of responses to Palestinian attacks. [89] (http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/08/22/1061529339585.html) [90] (http://www.voanews.com/article.cfm?objectID=D0E6F572_0ECB_4153_AF76EE7434694F8E)
  • War on Terrorism: President of the United States George W. Bush announces a freeze on the assets of the Palestinian militant leaders of Hamas and organizations financially supporting the "terrorist organization". The action is taken due to the fact that Hamas officially claims responsibility for the act of terror on August 19. [91] (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=578&ncid=578&e=3&u=/nm/20030822/ts_nm/mideast_usa_hamas_dc) [92] (http://asia.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=politicsNews&storyID=3323243)
  • Efforts by US broadcaster Fox News to seek an injunction preventing satirist Al Franken from publishing a book backfire as the judge not merely refuses their request but ridicules it. Judge Denny Chin told Fox, which had claimed that the subtitle of the book, which included the words "fair and balanced", infringed on their trademark of the term, "this is an easy case. This case is wholly without merit, both factually and legally". Chin added "It is ironic that a media company, which should be protecting the First Amendment (guaranteeing free speech), is seeking to undermine it." Franken, who as a result of the Fox case had received massive media exposure, commented "I'd like to thank Fox's lawyers for filing one of the stupidest briefs I've ever seen in my life." [93] (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/08/12/entertainment/main567800.shtml)
  • Separation of church and state: Alabama's Chief Justice Roy Moore is suspended by a Judicial Ethics Panel over his refusal to remove a monument listing the Ten Commandments which he had installed in the state Supreme Court building. Moore had been ordered to remove the controversial monument by U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson, who in a judgment in 2002 said the monument "violates the constitution's ban on government promotion of a religious doctrine". Thompson's judgment was upheld by eight Associate Justices. Their ruling was criticised by Moore and the Christian Defense Coalition, who have threatened to block the court building to prevent the monument's removal. [94] (http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=514&e=3&u=/ap/20030822/ap_on_re_us/ten_commandments_59) [95] (http://www.foxnews.com.edgesuite.net/story/0,2933,95416,00.html)

August 21, 2003

  Results from FactBites:
August 2003 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (6402 words)
A timeline of events in the news for August, 2003.
Congressman William J. Janklow, the only Representative from the state of South Dakota, is charged with vehicular manslaughter for an accident on August 16 in which Janklow's speeding car ran a stop sign and hit and killed a motorcyclist.
The action is taken due to the fact that Hamas officially claims responsibility for the act of terror on August 19.
  More results at FactBites »



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