Portal:Current events/April 2012

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2012
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April 2012 was the fourth month of that leap year. The month, which began on a Sunday, ended on a Monday after 30 days.

Portal:Current events

This is an archived version of Wikipedia's Current events Portal from April 2012.

Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and Culture
Disasters
  • A state of emergency is declared in Fiji as nearly 7000 people are displaced and two people have been killed during floods with conditions set to worsen with heavy storms expected following Tropical Depression 17F.(AAP via Herald Sun) (AFP via Perth Now)
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
  • The Colombian leftist group FARC releases its last remaining police and military captives. (BBC)
Business and economy
Disasters
International Relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Science
  • The data from the 1940 United States Census are released including information on 132 million people. (Washington Post) (Daily Mail)
Sports
Armed conflicts and attacks
Business and economy
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sports
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
Business and economy
Disasters
Law and crime
  • Sky News admits illegally hacking emails belonging to members of the public on two separate occasions. (BBC)
  • 2010–2012 Greek protests: Riot police and protesters clash in Athens, hours after a 77-year-old pensioner's suicide outside parliament. (BBC)
  • International internet group Anonymous protests censorship by targeting Chinese websites, including government bureaus in several Chinese cities. (Al Jazeera) (AP via The Irish Times)
  • Russian businessman Victor Bout is sentenced to 25 years in prison for smuggling weapons to the Colombian FARC guerilla movement. (RT)
Politics and elections
Arts and culture
Business and economy
  • A ban on the display of tobacco products by retailers comes into force in England. Lawmakers hope it will lead to a reduction in the number of young people taking up smoking. (BBC)
Disasters
International relations
Politics
Armed conflict and attacks
Disasters
Law and crime
  • Hamas executes three men (of whom one was convicted of collaborating with Israel) in the Gaza Strip. (AFP via Al-Arabiya)
Politics
Sport
  • The 158th Boat Race between Oxford and Cambridge is stopped mid-race due to a swimmer in the water. After a clash of oars at the restart, Cambridge won easily. (BBC) (Yahoo)
Armed conflict and attacks
Arts and culture
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
  • U.S. police arrest two men suspected in carrying out a shooting attack in Tulsa, Oklahoma, that happened the day before, leaving three people dead and two injured. The shootings are being investigated as a hate crime. (CNN)
Politics
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
International relations
  • North Korea positions a rocket for a launch later in the week, drawing protests from the Western world, South Korea and Japan, all of which suspect the rocket may be a ballistic missile test. (AFP via ABC News Australia)
Law and crime
  • Charges are dropped against Larisa Litvinova in the case of lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, whose controversial death in a Russian jail led to claims of torture and neglect. (BBC)
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
Business and economy
International relations
  • North Korean rocket:
    • North Korean space officials advise that all preparations have been completed for the launch. (AP via USA Today)
    • Several airlines in Asia temporarily re-route flights to avoid a North Korean rocket launch later this week. (Sydney Morning Herald)
  • The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom David Cameron arrives in Japan for the first leg of an Asian visit. (BBC)
Law and crime
Politics
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
Disasters
  • Indonesian earthquakes:
    • An earthquake occurs off the coast of Aceh in Indonesia with a preliminary magnitude of 8.6 and a tsunami warning issued. There are five indirect fatalities. (NineMSN)
    • An 8.2 magnitude aftershock occurs soon after. (News Limited)
  • Two US service personnel and another two are injured in a helicopter crash in Morocco. (Reuters)
  • Nine miners are rescued from a collapsed copper mine in southern Peru. (AFP via Herald Sun)
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
  • Sony Corp announces plans to cut 10,000 jobs around the world to reduce costs and return the company to profitability. (Reuters)
  • Google says that first quarter earnings rose over 24%, with net profit increasing to $8.14 billion. (Business Insider) (Google)
International relations
  • Japan and the Philippines are on alert for the North Korean rocket launch over the next few days. (AFP via Google News)
  • The Philippines sends another ship to join the current ship it has involved in a confrontation with two Chinese surveillance ships on the South China Sea, although both sides claim to be committed to a peaceful solution. (BBC) (Wall Street Journal)
  • Indian Maoists release Italian hostage Paolo Bosusco after holding him for nearly a month. (NDTV)
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
  • Spain seeks to deter Argentina's nationalization of YPF, an Argentine oil company majority-owned by Spain's Repsol, warning that such a nationalization would make Argentina a "pariah". (New York Times)
International relations
Politics and elections
Sports
Armed conflicts and attacks
Disasters
International relations
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
  • Events and ceremonies are held around the world marking the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the RMS Titanic. (The Observer)
  • Russian Orthodox patriarch Kirill says the church is stronger than its critics after a series of scandals. (AFP)
  • Spanish King Juan Carlos is criticised for going on a hunting trip to Botswana while his country is in an economic crisis. (Mail & Guardian)
Business and economy
International relations
  • Across Europe, hundreds of activists are prevented by authorities from boarding flights bound for Tel Aviv as part of the Welcome to Palestine campaign. Hundreds of Israeli police officers are deployed at Israel's main airport to arrest any activists who manage to fly in. (Al Jazeera) (The Times of Israel)
  • The U.S. Secret Service announces it has put 11 agents on leave while it investigates alleged "inappropriate conduct" in Cartagena, Colombia, before the 6th Summit of the Americas there attended by U.S. President Barack Obama. It emerges that five soldiers are also facing investigation. (Associated Press via The Guardian)
Politics
Armed conflicts and attacks
  • Syrian uprising:
    • UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urges "maximum restraint" from the Syrian regime as the first UN military observers arrive in Damascus to monitor a fragile ceasefire. (The Daily Telegraph) (Fox News) (Los Angeles Times)
    • At least 55 people are reported killed, including 26 in the city of Idlib, as violence increases again despite the arrival of U.N. observers to monitor a cease-fire. (CNN)
  • Military leaders and a group of political parties in Guinea-Bissau announce the formation of a Transitional National Council after the recent coup; the acting president and prime minister remain in detention. (CNN)
  • A six-year-old boy is killed and two other children are wounded after a militant throws a hand grenade into a co-educational school near Peshawar, northwest Pakistan. (CNN)
Arts and culture
Business and economics
Disasters
  • A 6.7-magnitude earthquake, at a depth of 23 mi (37 km), rocks Valparaíso, Chile. (CNN) (United States Geological Survey)
International relations
  • Australia relaxes sanctions on Myanmar, following political reforms in Myanmar, including by-elections earlier this month in which opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi's party won dozens of seats. (CNN)
  • The U.S. military's top officer Martin Dempsey speaks of being "embarrassed" and tells a Pentagon news conference "we let the boss down" in relation to allegations that United States Secret Service agents habitually associated with prostitutes in Colombia. Pentagon spokesman George E. Little tells reporters that the number of military staff involved could be more than the five originally reported. (BBC)
  • An Israeli soldier hits a foreign pro-Palestinian activist, believed to be a Danish national, with his gun after protesters attack and injure the soldier; the Danish ambassador to Israel demands an explanation from Israel. (Al Jazeera) (Los Angeles Times) (Toronto Star) (Ynet)
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sport
  • Fabrice Muamba is discharged from hospital after his cardiac arrest during an FA Cup match. (BBC) (East African Standard)
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
Disasters
  • Port Said Stadium disaster: A hearing of 73 men accused of involvement in the killing of 79 people is adjourned until May 5. (Al Jazeera)
International relations
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
International relations
  • Cuba claims U.S. President Barack Obama was forced to use his "imperial veto" to stop the summit calling for an end to the U.S. embargo against it. (BBC)
  • North Korea rejects criticism from countries on the United Nations Security Council regarding its failed rocket launch, and breaks off an agreement that would see it halt testing of nuclear weapons in exchange for food aid. (AFP via Google)
  • Israeli army officer Shalom Eisner, who struck a Danish activist in the face with the butt of his gun, is dismissed from his post but not from the Israeli Defense Forces. (BBC) (Xinhua) (The Globe and Mail)
  • Senior U.S. officials condemn graphic photos depicting their troops posing with the mangled corpses of suspected Afghan suicide bombers on at least two separate occasions months apart. The Los Angeles Times defends its publication of the photos after being warned against the move by the U.S. military. (Al Jazeera)
Law and crime
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Disasters
International relations
  • An agent at the centre of the U.S. prostitution scandal in Colombia denied one of his escorts $770 from an agreed fee of $800, according to The New York Times, thus prompting the row that revealed the scandal to the public. (BBC)
  • India test launches its long-range Agni-V intercontinental ballistic missile. (Times of India)
  • South Korea deploys new cruise missiles capable of destroying targets such as missile and nuclear bases anywhere in North Korea. (AFP via Google)
Law and crime
Science
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Business and economy
  • Disney Studios chairman Rich Ross resigns, less than three years after taking the position. (The Hollywood Reporter)
Disasters
Law and crime
  • Marcus Robinson, due to have been executed in 2007, is ordered off death row after North Carolina Superior Court Judge Gregory Weeks rules his trial was tainted by racial bias, grounds for cancellation of a death sentence under the state's Racial Justice Act. The judge used controversial statistical evidence of bias to grant the change of sentence. (BBC)
Politics
Conflicts
  • Arab Spring:
    • Bahraini uprising:
      • Demonstrators against the regime flood a main highway in a march stretching for miles as Bahrain's rulers struggle to contain opposition anger ahead of the Formula 1 Grand Prix. (The Daily Telegraph)
      • Police fire tear gas at demonstrators outside the capital Manama ahead of the Grand Prix. (RTE)
      • Salah Abbas Habib is beaten to death by police supporting the Bahraini regime. (Al Jazeera) (BBC)
      • The regime stifles coverage of demonstrations against its rule by denying entry to journalists from news organisations including Sky, which holds the UK TV rights to air the controversial Formula 1 Grand Prix, as well as CNN, Reuters and the Financial Times. (The Guardian)
      • The Bahraini regime presses ahead with its plans to use the Formula 1 Grand Prix as a symbol of national unity. (The Irish Times)
      • FIA president Jean Todt dismisses concerns about the reputation of Formula 1 following week-long damaging headlines and calls for a boycott over its support of the regime. (Daily Mail)
    • Syrian uprising: The United Nations Security Council votes to send 300 more observers to Syria. (The Guardian)
    • Three people are killed during a flare of fresh fighting in the Libyan desert town of Kufra overnight. (France 24)
Disasters
International relations
  • Japan agrees to write off more than US$3.7 billion of debt owed by Burma and to resume development aid. (BBC)
  • The U.S. Secret Service dismisses three more employees over the prostitution scandal involving U.S. agents at last weekend's 6th Summit of the Americas in Colombia. (BBC) (Al Jazeera)
Law and crime
Politics
Science
  • Four new species of freshwater crab –bright purple in colour– are found in the Philippines. (Bangkok Post)
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
  • Bahraini uprising:
    • Renewed protests against the regime break out overnight with police firing tear gas and stun grenades at civilians. Chants of "Down with Hamad," calling for the King of Bahrain to be ousted from power, are reported by witnesses. (RTE)
    • King of Bahrain Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa issues a pledge of "reform and reconciliation" ahead of the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix. (Sky News)
    • Despite calls for the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix to be cancelled following the death of a man, the race is staged, under armed guard. (BBC)
    • Turnout is reported to be low, though Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, heir apparent to the Bahraini throne, is seen smiling and shaking hands with other spectators at the finish. (Reuters)
    • It is revealed that Force India tried to pull out of the race and return to Britain but, after the team's refusal to take to the circuit, there was a confrontation between Bernie Ecclestone and the Force India team. (Daily Mirror)
    • The Sunday Telegraph's chief foreign correspondent Colin Freeman and his fixer and translator are arrested. Activist Ala'a Shehabi is arrested after reporting the arrest of Colin Freeman. The Guardian reports the arrest of Ala'a Shehabi. (The Guardian)
    • Calls for afternoon protests at the destroyed Pearl Roundabout, the original site of the uprising against the ruling Al Khalifa family, get underway as the race ends, while protests are also held outside the London offices of Formula One chief, Bernie Ecclestone, with demonstrators chanting "down, down Bernie" and "shame on you Bernie". (Al Jazeera)
    • Anonymous, which last week took out the official website of Formula One, posts partially redacted data concerning dozens of race ticket holders found on Formula One servers. The international group also posts a statement online saying it intends to carry out further action if imprisoned hunger striker Abdulhadi al-Khawaja or his family are harmed, promising to "respond with fury and rage the likes of which have never been seen." (NPR)
    • British politician Peter Hain expresses dismay that the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix has been allowed to take place. (ITV News)
    • A United Kingdom Channel 4 news team is arrested with a Bahraini driver reported as having been assaulted. (Channel 4)
  • One RKK (Runda Kumpulan Kecil) separatist group member and a Thai policeman are killed in a firefight in the village of Ruso in Thailand's Narathiwat Province. (Bangkok Post)
  • Sudan launches a fresh incursion into South Sudan. (Al Jazeera)
Health
International relations
Politics and elections
Armed conflicts and attacks
  • At least two people are killed and hundreds of others injured in clashes between police and protestors during a nationwide strike in Bangladesh, which was triggered by the unexplained disappearance of opposition politician Ilyas Ali. (Al Jazeera)
  • Iran's oil ministry and its National Iranian Oil Company suffers a malware attack by a computer virus. (BBC)(New York Times)
  • Arab Spring:
    • Bahraini uprising: Bahrain's highest appeals court postpones for a week the final verdict in the case of imprisoned hunger striker Abdulhadi al-Khawaja and 20 other democracy activists. (BBC)
    • Syrian uprising: Syrian regime forces kill at least 33 people with shells and gunfire in the city of Hama. (BBC)
    • The Egyptian government denies licenses to eight U.S. civil society groups, including the Carter Center. (BBC)
Arts and culture
International relations
  • White House lawyers launch an internal investigation into the role its advance staff may have played in the U.S. Secret Service sex scandal in Colombia, though no evidence has been found to implicate anyone in the scandal. (BBC)
  • Kazakhstan issues an official ‘thank you’ to Sacha Baron Cohen for his comedy character Borat Sagdiyev despite an initial ban. (Daily Mail)
  • The European Union suspends most trade sanctions against Myanmar for a year but leaves an arms embargo in place. (AFP via Google News)
  • North Korea threatens to reduce South Korea to "ashes" after the failed North Korean rocket launch. (Toronto Star)
  • In accordance with a request from the South Korean government, China stops the deportation of North Korean defectors who escape to China. (Daily Yomiuri)
Law and crime
  • Former Icelandic prime minister Geir Haarde is found not guilty of negligence over the island's 2008 economic meltdown. He is to face no punishment and his legal expenses are to be paid. (BBC)
  • The sister of MI6 officer Gareth Williams, found dead in his flat, tells his inquest that he had been a "scrupulous risk-assessor" and only let "vetted" people into his home. (BBC)
  • Sky News email hacking:
    • The British broadcasting regulator Ofcom launches an investigation into the hacking of private email accounts by Sky News. (BBC)
    • The Ofcom announcement comes on the same day that the news channel's boss John Ryley appears before the Leveson Inquiry where he says the company broke the law by hacking emails. (BBC)
  • Officials in Florida refuse to allow Bill Lee, the police chief who did not arrest George Zimmerman after he shot and killed unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin, to resign. George Zimmerman, now facing a murder charge, is released on bail and taken to a secret location. (BBC)
  • The North Carolina trial of former U.S. Senator and presidential hopeful John Edwards, concerning the use of illegal campaign donations to cover up an affair with a mistress, begins. (Reuters)
  • Around 45 people are detained across China in a tainted capsule medicine scandal. (Straits Times)
  • Three men appear in court in the town of Newry in Northern Ireland to face charges of threatening to kill, INLA membership and blackmail. (BBC)
Politics and elections
Science
  • Scientists record what they believe to be the first adult white orca in the wild off the coast of Kamchatka, Russia. (BBC)
Sport
  • The home and email addresses of the 38,000 entrants to the London Marathon are published on the website of the organisers. (BBC)
  • Rangers F.C. owner Craig Whyte is banned for life from any involvement in Scottish football while a 12-month transfer embargo is imposed on the club. (BBC)
Armed conflicts and attacks
Business and economy
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
Business and economy
Law and crime
Politics
Armed conflicts and attacks
Business and economy
Disasters
International relations
  • Missiles displayed at a recent North Korean parade are reportedly fakes, according to analysts. (The Telegraph)
Law and crime
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
International relations
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
Disasters
International relations
Politics and elections
Armed conflicts and attacks
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
  • Sudan arrests four foreigners in the disputed border region with South Sudan on accusations of spying. (Arab News)
  • Chinese authorities begin to round-up associates of human rights activist Chen Guangcheng in light of his escape from house arrest. (BBC) (Hindustan Times)
Armed conflict and attacks
Art and culture
Business and economics
  • Spain's economy double dips, with a quarter of the population out of work. (Al Jazeera)
Disasters
International relations
  • U.S. President Barack Obama refuses to comment on Chen Guangcheng, the blind Chinese dissident said to be at the U.S. embassy after fleeing house arrest. (BBC)
  • South Korea arrests nine Chinese sailors after four Korean officials were injured in a maritime dispute. (AP via The Washington Post)
  • Three Taiwanese MPs and military officers visit the disputed Spratly Islands in the South China Sea, amid mounting tensions in the area. (Bangkok Post)
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sport
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References

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