On this day - June 1

Today is Wednesday, June 1, the 152nd day of 2011. There are 213 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

1479 - The University of Copenhagen, Denmark, is founded.

1524 - The yearlong anti-aristocratic Peasants' War breaks out in southern Germany.

1562 - Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I signs a truce with the Sultan of Turkey, Suleyman I, agreeing to pay tribute for Austria's share of Hungary.

1671 - Turks declares war on Poland, leading to the Polish surrender of the Ukraine.

1813 - The US Navy gains its motto as the mortally wounded commander of the frigate Chesapeake, Captain James Lawrence, said, "Don't give up the ship" during a losing battle with a British frigate.

1857 - Britain's Royal Navy destroys Chinese fleet in China Sea in the Second Opium War.

1869 - New Spanish Constitution is promulgated, continuing the monarchy but allowing universal male suffrage and freedom of religion.

1936 - After a war of conquest, Ethiopia is annexed by Benito Mussolini's Italy.

1943 - A civilian flight from Lisbon to London is shot down by the Germans during World War II, killing all aboard, including actor Leslie Howard.

1945 - Sukarno, leader of the Indonesian independence movement, gives a speech defining the Pantjasila, or Five Principles of Indonesian nationhood, for the first time.

1958 - Charles de Gaulle becomes premier of France.

1967 - The Beatles release their landmark album, Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.

1968 - Author-lecturer Helen Keller, who earned a college degree despite being blind and deaf most of her life, dies in Westport, Connecticut.

1973 - The Greek military regime abolishes the monarchy.

1976 - Syrian forces invade Lebanon and capture Christian and Muslim positions, advancing on Beirut in attempt to halt 14-month civil war.

1980 - CNN, the Cable News Network, makes its debut in the United States.

1987 - Lebanon's Prime Minister Rashid Karami is killed when a time bomb planted in an attache case explodes in his lap aboard a helicopter.

1990 - US President George Bush and Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev sign a pact to cut nuclear missiles and chemical weapons stockpiles.

1992 - Ecologists, diplomats and native people from around the world gather in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, for the 12-day Earth Summit.

1994 - South Africa rejoins the British Commonwealth, 33 years after leaving over apartheid.

1996 - Russia announces that the ruble, whose value had been strictly controlled by the Kremlin since the 1920s, will trade freely.

1997 - Betty Shabazz, the widow of Malcolm X, is fatally burned in a fire set off by her 12-year-old grandson in her Yonkers, New York, apartment.

1998 - Fleeing fierce fighting and persecution by Serbs in Kosovo, 2 000 ethnic Albanian refugees reach Albania.

1999 - Nato jets attacking Kosovo fire into neighbouring Albania, hitting government bunkers, injuring a refugee and narrowly missing a group of foreign journalists.

2000 - A UN tribunal for Rwanda's 1994 genocide sentences a Belgian-born radio journalist to 12 years in prison for broadcasts that encouraged the slaughter.

2001 - Nepal's crown prince Dipendra shoots and kills his parents, King Birendra and Queen Aiswarya, and six other royal family members before shooting himself; Nkosi Johnson, who made a great impact on public perceptions of the HIV/Aids, dies at age 12.

2002- Queen Elizabeth II opens Buckingham Palace to 12 000 guests for a four-day national party in celebration of her 50 years on the throne.

2003 - Engineers close most of the sluice gates of the Three Gorges Dam on China's Yangtze River in the central province of Hubei, thereby beginning the process of filling a reservoir behind the dam.

2004 - Ghazi Mashal Ajil al-Yawer, a Sunni Muslim critic of the occupation, is named as Iraq's new president. Al-Yawer is the choice of the US-picked Iraqi Governing Council, which dissolved itself immediately so that the new government can start work even before it takes power from the American-led coalition at the end of the month.

2005 - Gunmen kill a French diplomat as he drives through Haiti's capital, amid growing insecurity in the hemisphere's poorest country.

2006 - The US Army Corps of Engineers takes responsibility for the flooding of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina, saying the levees failed because they were built in a disjointed fashion using outdated data.

2007 - Lebanese tanks and armoured vehicles battle their way into the outer neighbourhoods of a Palestinian refugee camp in some of the heaviest fighting since violence broke out between the military and al-Qaeda-inspired militants nearly two weeks ago.

2008 - Australia pulls its combat soldiers from Iraq, fulfilling an election promise that helped sweep Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to power in November.

2009 - An Air France jet carrying 228 people from Rio de Janeiro to Paris runs into a towering wall of thunderstorms and disappears over the Atlantic Ocean.

Today's Birthdays:
Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka (1804-1857); John Masefield, English poet (1878-1967); Brigham Young, US Mormon leader (1801-1877); Marilyn Monroe, US actress (1926-1962); Colleen McCullough, Australian author (1937--); Morgan Freeman, US actor (1937--); Jason Donovan US actor (1968--); Alanis Morissette, Canadian singer (1974--); Heidi Klum, model and TV host (1973--); Jonathan Pryce, Welsh actor (1947--).

Thought For Today:
Peace without justice is tyranny - Allen White, American writer and newspaper editor (1868-1944).
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