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Sunday, January 26
By The Associated Press
Associated Press
2014-01-19 09:22 AM

Today is Sunday, Jan. 26, the 26th day of 2014. There are 339 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

1609 - The Ottoman Empire signs Peace Treaty of Karlowitz with Austria, Russia, Poland and Venice ceding control of most of Transylvania and Hungary. The treaty significantly diminishes Turkish influence in east-central Europe and makes Austria the dominant power there.

1654 - Dutch settlers are expelled from northeastern Brazil, ending a 24-year struggle to wrest the colony from the Portuguese.

1778 - Australia is settled by the British.

1788 - First fleet of ships bringing convicts from Britain arrives in Australia to establish penal colonies.

1802 - Congress passes an act calling for a library to be established within the U.S. capital, paving the way for the Library of Congress.

1841 - Britain formally occupies Hong Kong, which the Chinese had ceded to the British.

1865 - Britain announces no more convicts will be shipped to Australia.

1885 - The Mahdist forces take Khartoum in Sudan after a nine-month siege. They slaughter most of the inhabitants and the garrison, including British Gen. Charles George Gordon.

1930 - Mohandas K. Gandhi, India's independence leader who also was known as "Mahatma" Gandhi, begins a march across India against British occupation.

1931 - Mohandas K. Gandhi is released from prison in India for discussions with government.

1934 - Germany signs 10-year nonaggression pact with Poland.

1942 - First U.S. expeditionary force arrives in Europe in World War II, with troops put ashore in Northern Ireland.

1947 - Sweden's 40-year-old crown prince Gustav Adolf is killed in a plane crash in Denmark, leaving five small children, among them the current King Carl XVI Gustav, without their father.

1950 - India officially proclaims itself a republic as Rajendra Prasad takes the oath of office as president.

1952 - Famed Shepherd's Hotel in Cairo, Egypt, is burned during riots by mobs demanding British withdrawal from the Suez.

1957 - Kashmir Constitution for incorporation with India goes into effect.

1962 - The United States launches Ranger 3 to land scientific instruments on the moon, but the probe misses its target by some 35,500 kilometers (22,000 miles).

1987 - U.S. President Ronald Reagan vows he will make no concessions to Lebanese terrorists, and warns Americans to get out of Lebanon.

1988 - The Andrew Lloyd Webber musical "Phantom of the Opera" opens at Broadway's Majestic Theater in New York.

1990 - Romanian Vice President Dmitru Mazilu resigns to protest increasingly repressive policies of that country's interim government.

1991 - Seven Iraqi warplanes fly to Iran to avoid destruction in Gulf War.

1992 - In Mauritania, police open fire at opposition supporters protesting election of military ruler.

1993 - Vaclav Havel is elected president of the new Czech Republic, one of the successors to the Czechoslovak federation.

1994 - Civilians mob a food convoy and shoot six of its police escorts in a grim demonstration of how hunger and desperation are fueling lawlessness in Bosnia.

1996 - Polish Prime Minister Jozef Oleksy, accused of spying for Moscow for 13 years, resigns.

1997 - Police wielding batons beat back demonstrators as tens of thousands march through Belgrade in a continuing protest against government annulment of local elections.

1998 - U.S. President Bill Clinton says that he "did not have sexual relations with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky." He acknowledges a relationship some months later.

1999 - The first official commemoration of homosexual Holocaust victims takes place at a Memorial Day service at the former Sachsenhausen concentration camp. An estimated 10,000 gays were persecuted during World War II.

2000 - More than a year after a DNA test suggests that Thomas Jefferson may have had a son by his slave Sally Hemings, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Foundation -- which owns Jefferson's home -- acknowledges that he probably was the father of one, if not all six, of her children.

2001 - The most powerful earthquake to strike India in half a century levels parts of western Gujarat state killing more than 2,000 people and injuring more than 3,000.

2003 - A China Airlines jet lands in Shanghai, China, and picks up passengers, becoming the first Taiwanese airliner to do so in mainland China since 1949.

2004 - U.S. intelligence agencies need to explain why their research indicated Iraq possessed banned weapons before the American-led invasion, says the outgoing top U.S. inspector, David Kay, who now believes Saddam Hussein had no such arms.

2005 - Prime Minister Tony Blair's government proposes sweeping new powers to control terrorism suspects, including electronic tagging, curfews and house arrests without trial.

2007 - U.N. officials announce that Iran plans to start assembling thousands of uranium-enriching centrifuges in the next month.

2008 - Gunmen kidnap burqa-clad American aid worker Cyd Mizell and her driver, Abdul Hadi, in a residential neighborhood of Kandahar, the latest in a series of kidnappings of foreigners in the troubled country.

2009 - The European Union removes an Iranian opposition group, the People's Mujahedeen Organization of Iran, from its terror list.

2010 -- Thousands of Venezuelan university students protest against President Hugo Chavez again, accusing the socialist leader of forcing an opposition-allied TV channel off cable and satellite as a means of silencing his critics.

2011 - An explosion likely caused by a methane gas buildup rips through an underground coal mine in Colombia during a shift change, killing 21 workers. A similar fatal blast occurred at the same mine four years ago.

2012 -- Egypt bans at least 10 Americans and Europeans from leaving the country, hiking tensions with Washington over a campaign by Egypt's military against groups promoting democracy and human rights.

2013 -- French and Malian troops regain control of the airport and bridge of the crucial, northern city of Gao, marking their biggest advance yet in their bid to oust al-Qaida-linked extremists who have controlled northern Mali for months.

Today's Birthdays:

Ugo Fiscolo, Italian author (1778-1827); Douglas MacArthur, U.S. general (1880-1964); Paul Newman, U.S. actor (1925-2008); Bob Uecker, U.S. baseball player/sports announcer/actor (1935--); David Strathairn, U.S. actor (1949--); Lucinda Williams, U.S. country singer (1953--); Eddie Van Halen, Dutch-born guitarist (1957--); Ellen DeGeneres, U.S. comedian/talk show host (1958--).

Thought For Today:

What we really are matters more than what other people think of us -- Jawaharlal Nehru, Indian statesman (1889-1964).

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