Portal:Current events/May 2012

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2012
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May 2012 was the fifth month of that leap year. The month, which began on a Tuesday, ended on a Thursday after 31 days.

Portal:Current events

This is an archived version of Wikipedia's Current events Portal from May 2012.

Armed conflict and attacks
Business and economy
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average reaches a four-year high due to strong manufacturing figures and company earnings. (CNN)
  • Tens of thousands of people march in Asia, Europe and North America, protesting against job cuts, inequality, and austerity measures. (Al Jazeera) (Reuters) (The Guardian) (Christian Science Monitor) (MSNBC) (ABC News)
  • April car sales in Japan rise by 92% year-over-year, a gain partially realized due to low sales in the wake of last year's earthquake and tsunami. (Kuwait News Agency)
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
International relations
Law and crime
  • Coroner Fiona Wilcox states that Secret Intelligence Service officer Gareth Williams was "on the balance of probabilities" unlawfully killed and that it is unlikely he found his way all by himself into the padlocked red sports bag in which his body was found in the bath at his home. (BBC)
  • A man, believed by the media (but not confirmed) to be J. T. Ready, a Neo-Nazi, and a member of the Minutemen Civil Defense Corps, is among five individuals in Gilbert, Arizona, found dead with gunshot wounds. It is unclear what role he may have played in the apparent shootings, and what precise type they were, but he is believed to have shot the others and then himself in a possible murder-suicide. (MSNBC)
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
  • 34 people are killed in raids by gunmen opposed to the burning of a colleague at a cattle market in northern Nigeria. (AP via Google News)
  • Seven people are killed and 30 injured in explosions near a police post in Makhachkala, Dagestan, southern Russia. (euronews)
  • Activists say four students are killed in an attack on anti-government demonstrations at Aleppo University, Syria. (Al Jazeera)
  • Farhan Jeemis Abdulle, a Somali journalist and well-known local reporter for Radio Daljir is shot and killed by an unidentified gunman in Galkayo while walking to his home district of Garsor. Puntland authorities arrived on scene to investigate the killing but no arrests have been made. Abdulle is the fifth journalist to be murdered in Somalia this year, and the second in Galkayo. (Shabelle Media Network)
Arts and culture
Disasters
  • At least 15 die and 21 are injured when a bus plunges into a ravine in a mountainous region of northern Pakistan. (AFP via The Telegraph)
Law and crime
International relations
Politics
Armed conflict and attacks
  • At least one person is killed and at least 373 others are wounded when armed forces fire water cannon, tear gas and rocks on demonstrators near Egypt's defence ministry in Cairo. (Al Jazeera)
  • Official figures indicate that at least 144 people were injured at an Armenian government campaign event in Yerevan's central square after an explosion during a political rally. (BBC) (Al Jazeera)
  • At least eleven people are killed in a suicide bombing attack in a crowded market in Pakistan's Bajaur Agency. (Xinhua), (Reuters via MSNBC)
  • Mexican Drug War
    • 23 bodies—14 of them decapitated and 9 of them hanged from a bridge—are found in the Mexican city of Nuevo Laredo; those killed were reportedly members of the Gulf Cartel who were killed by Los Zetas, a rival cartel. (Yahoo! News)
    • Three journalists are killed and their bodies dumped in plastic bags in a canal in Boca del Río in the Mexican state of Veracruz, where the rival criminal groups of Los Zetas and the Gulf Cartel are fighting for territorial control. (The Huffington Post) (Houston Chronicle)
Arts and culture
Health
  • A new study published in The Lancet finds that up to 90 per cent of school-leavers in Asia's major cities are suffering from myopia, or short-sightedness and that 10 to 20 per cent have high myopia, which can lead to blindness. (Al Jazeera)
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
Business and economy
Disasters
  • At least 14 people are killed at a fire at a drug rehabilitation centre in Lima. (BBC) (Al Jazeera)
  • At least 13 people are killed and dozens of others are declared missing as a result of a Nepal flash flood after a mountain river burst its banks. (BBC)
  • At least nine people are killed in a fire at a karaoke venue in Busan, South Korea. (Yonhap News)
Law and crime
  • The Cambodian government closes an investigation into the shooting of anti-logging activist Chhut Vuthy and a military policeman after the arrest of a security guard. (Straits Times)
Science
Sport
Disasters
  • Off the coast in the north of Peru hundreds of dolphins and more than 1,000 birds, mostly pelicans, die under unexplained circumstances. (BBC)(New York Times)
Law and crime
  • The Government of Egypt extends a curfew around its Defence Ministry in Cairo to deter attacks for a third night. (Egyptian Independent)
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Disasters
  • The death toll from flash floods on the Seti River in Nepal reaches 17 with another 47 people missing and presumed dead. (AP via Mercury News)
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Science
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economics
International relations
Law and crime
  • Al Jazeera closes its English-language bureau in China after its reporter Melissa Chan is expelled from the country. (Al Jazeera) (BBC)
  • A Thai man in his 60s who was jailed for 20 years for sending text messages deemed offensive to the Thai royal family has died, his lawyer said. (BBC)
  • A CIA double agent was involved in a foiled bomb plot by Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula to blow up an U.S.-bound flight, according to government officials. (CNN)
  • The New York Court of Appeals, in The People v. James Kent, rules that merely viewing child pornography (or having a cache of it, as on a cell phone), despite its offensiveness, is not in itself illegal in the state, so long as one is not aware of the cache or did not download the images ono a drive in order to view them; state legislators have stated they will work to close those loopholes through formulation of legislation. Distribution, production, and purposeful possession would still be illegal.(Huffington Post)
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Art and culture
Business and economics
Disasters
International relations
  • India halts a plan to re-introduce cheetahs to the country by shipments from Africa. (Straits Times)
  • Two Palestinian prisoners held in Israel enter the 71st day of their hunger strikes. United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon expressed his concern about the condition of the hunger strikers. (Daily Mail) (UN News Centre)
Law and crime
Politics
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
Arts and culture
  • Sleeping Girl, a picture by American pop artist Roy Lichtenstein, sells at auction for US$44.9 million, setting a new record for a Lichtenstein artwork. (BBC)
  • Figure Writing Reflected in a Mirror, a painting by Francis Bacon, sells at auction for US$44.9 million in New York. (RTÉ)
  • Salman Rushdie, Art Spiegelman and Mario Vargas Llosa are among those to protest against the planned spending of US$300 million on the Fifth Avenue branch of the New York Public Library, saying it is "a misplaced use of funds in a time of great scarcity". A letter signed by more than 700 writers, academics and others is sent to the library. (The Guardian)
Business and economy
  • British public sector protests:
    • As many as 400,000 public sector workers in the United Kingdom resolve to stage a 24-hour mass strike in protest against planned pension cuts. (BBC) (The Scotsman)
    • More than 30,000 police officers from across the UK protest against police reforms, budget cuts and pay cuts in the biggest demonstration by police officers ever held in England and Wales. (The Guardian)
  • An Air India industrial dispute escalates, with over 20 flights cancelled. (IBN Live)
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
International relations
  • An American study reveals that North Koreans have an increasing level of informal access to foreign media, despite the intense censorship efforts of the North Korean government. (BBC)
  • Security is tightened in Manila, the capital of the Philippines, ahead of anti-China protests amid an ongoing Sino-Philippine territorial dispute in the South China Sea. (Reuters)
Law and crime
Science
  • Chinese scientists use quantum teleportation to transmit photons over a distance of 97 kilometres (60 mi) – a world record for quantum teleportation. (PopSci)
  • A panel of American health experts recommends formal approval of the Truvada anti-HIV drug for prescription to non-infected men who have sex with multiple male partners, a decision opposed by some health workers and groups active among those with HIV. (BBC)
  • American researchers report that preventable infections are the leading cause of child mortality worldwide. Of the 7.6 million children who died before their fifth birthday in 2010, over 60% died of infections such as pneumonia. (BBC)
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
Business and economy
Disasters
International relations
Politics and elections
Science
  • The discovery of a missing piece of the Mayan calendar appears to render the 2012 phenomenon obsolete, by proving that the Maya did not believe 2012 to be the end of the world. (WBRC)
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
Disasters
  • Torrential rainfall and flooding in China's Hunan Province destroys a bridge and 3,500 homes, leading to the evacuation of 28,000 people in Pingjiang County. (Shanghai Daily) (Xinhua via Shanghai Daily)
Law and crime
Politics
Science
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
  • Syrian uprising: At least 30 people die in a battle between Syrian government forces and rebel fighters in the town of Rastan. Reportedly, 23 of the dead are government soldiers. (Daily Telegraph)
Business and economy
  • An Air India pilots' strike enters its seventh day, with the airline cancelling 13 international flights. (NDTV) (BBC)
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Science
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
  • Syrian uprising: At least 20 civilians are killed in the Syrian province of Idlib after security forces open fire on a funeral procession. (BBC)
  • At least 44 people are killed amid a Yemeni government offensive to retake Zinjibar and Jaar from Islamist militants. Among the casualties are three soldiers and at least 11 civilians. (Trust.org via AP)
  • A targeted bombing in the Colombian capital Bogota injures former Interior Minister Fernando Londoño, and kills his driver and a police officer. (Trust.org via AP)
Arts and culture
Business and economy
  • The combined economy of the 17 eurozone nations narrowly avoids a recession, largely due to relatively high economic growth in Germany. However, overall growth in the eurozone was zero in the first quarter of 2012. (The Daily Telegraph)
  • A customer of American multinational retail corporation Wal-Mart is bitten by a rattlesnake on the premises of the Clarkston, Washington store. (BBC)
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Science
  • The United States announces a national plan to develop an effective treatment for Alzheimer's disease by 2025. (BBC)
  • American scientists develop a device which uses genetically-engineered viruses to generate electricity. The invention could allow the development of ubiquitous piezoelectric micro-generators which gather energy from everyday vibrations such as closing doors. (BBC)
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
  • Cambodian police and soldiers clash with villagers after attempting to evict them from their land, where a Russian plantation project is to be headquartered. A teenage girl has reportedly been killed. (AP via The Jakarta Post)
Disasters
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Art and culture
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
International relations
Law and crime
Politics
  • The leader of the Syrian National Council, Burhan Ghalioun, offers to resign after being accused of monopolizing power. (Al Jazeera)
  • A group of Chinese Communist Party veterans call for the removal of security chief Zhou Yongkang. (Al Jazeera)
  • The U.S. Senate confirmed two of the President's nominees to the Federal Reserve, bringing board membership up to the statutory complement of seven. This is the first time all seven seats have been filled in six years. (Reuters)
Armed conflicts and attacks
  • Mexican Drug War:
    • Masked gunmen kidnap and kill Marcos Antonio Avila Garcia, a journalist who often wrote about organized crime. His corpse was found inside a plastic bag in the Mexican city of Empalme. (Associated Press)
  • Three roadside bombs explode at an outdoor pet market in Baghdad, Iraq, killing five people. (CNN)
Arts and culture
Business and economy
International relations
Politics
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
  • A car bomb explodes near a military complex in the Syrian city of Deir ez-Zor, killing 9 people. (Al Jazeera)
  • A bomb, made of three gas cylinders, explodes in front of a vocational school in the Italian city of Brindisi, killing a 16-year-old female student. (BBC) (La Repubblica)
  • A suicide bombing at a police checkpoint in the eastern Afghan province of Khost kills 10 people, including a number of police officers. (BBC)
  • Sri Lanka marks the third anniversary of the end of its 26-year civil war with a large military parade in Colombo. (BBC)
Arts and culture
Disasters
  • At least 20 people are killed in an explosion in a road tunnel being constructed in central China. (BBC)
  • At least two people are killed and 17 others are injured when a rally car plows through a crowd of spectators in the Var region of southern France. (BBC) (Al Jazeera)
International relations
Science
  • Retired American psychiatrist Robert Spitzer apologises for his "fatally flawed" study, published in 2001, which falsely lent credence to the myth that gay people could be "cured". (The Guardian)
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Business and economy
  • Australian airline Qantas announces cuts to 500 maintenance jobs. (News Limited)
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Science
Business and economy
Disasters
Law and crime
  • A military court in Lebanon releases anti-Syrian government activist Shadi al-Moulawi after his arrest sparked violent clashes that killed eight people. (Al Jazeera)
  • The trial begins in Mauritius of two hotel workers accused of murdering Irish woman Michaela McAreavey while she honeymooned on the island in 2011. (RTÉ)
Politics and elections
Science
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economy
  • Revised figures indicate the UK economy shrank by 0.3% in the first three months of 2012, more than initially thought. (BBC)
Disasters
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflict and attacks
  • A car bomb exploded in the Mexican border city of Nuevo Laredo, injuring 10 police officers during the Mexican Drug War. The attack was believed to have been carried out by Los Zetas, one of Mexico's most powerful drug trafficking organizations. (CNN)
  • Dozens of women and children are killed in a massacre by the Syrian army in the town of Houla, Homs province, Syria during the ongoing Syrian uprising. (AFP)
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Science
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Disasters
International relations
Law and crime
  • A gunman in the town of Hyvinkää near the Finnish capital Helsinki kills 2 people and injures 7 in a shooting before being arrested. (AP via ABC News America) (AP via Google News)
  • The brother of Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng is reported as missing, and is then found a day later. (Reuters)
  • The Vatican confirms that the butler to Pope Benedict XVI has been arrested for allegedly leaking confidential documents. (AP via Washington Post)
  • The "Miami cannibal attack" on the MacArthur Causeway in Miami, Florida.
Politics and elections
Armed conflict and attacks
Arts and culture
Disasters
International relations
  • IMF head Christine Lagarde is accused of "insulting the Greek people" following her latest controversial comments about the country. (BBC)
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sports
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
Business and economics
Disasters and accidents
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
Sport
Armed conflicts and attacks
Arts and culture
  • The gallery which exhibited Brett Murray's controversial painting The Spear agrees to take down an image of the artwork from its website as thousands of people march in protest through the streets of Johannesburg. (Al Jazeera)
  • China's best-known microblogging site Sina Weibo introduces new restrictions on the content its 300 million users can post. (Radio Television Hong Kong)
Business and economy
  • Four of Wall Street's market makers involved in Facebook's botched IPO are expecting losses from technical glitches to be around US$115 million. (Reuters)
  • Three Spanish savings banks - Ibercaja, Liberbank and Caja3 - approve a merger. (BBC)
  • Russian social network VK announces that it will postpone its planned initial public offering indefinitely, following the recent botched float of Facebook. (Reuters via Chicago Tribune)
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
Science
  • Following the successful sequencing of the tomato genome, scientists state that tastier and more pesticide-resistant tomato varieties can be engineered for commercial use within five years. (BBC)
  • Scientists report that supervolcanoes can develop much faster than previously suspected – erupting within just a few hundred years of their formation, instead of tens of thousands of years. (BBC)
Sports
Armed conflicts and attacks
  • A series of bombings in the Iraqi capital Baghdad kills 14 people. (CNN)
  • A suicide bomber kills five policeman at a police headquarters in the southern Afghan province of Kandahar. (BBC)
  • A German engineer taken hostage by gunmen in Kano, Nigeria, in January is killed by his captors during a failed rescue operation by Nigerian forces. (BBC)
Arts and culture
Business and economy
  • A nationwide strike against rising petrol prices closes shops and disrupts public transport in India, with the government facing widespread criticism over its economic management. (Al Jazeera)
International relations
Law and crime
Politics and elections
  • Egypt formally ends its 31-year state of emergency, which gave security forces broad powers to suppress civil unrest and detain dissenters. (BBC)
  • Voters in Ireland go to the polls for a referendum on whether the Irish government can approve the European Fiscal Compact. (Irish Examiner) (The Guardian) (Al Jazeera) (France24) (BBC)
  • After four days of negotiations with student leaders, the Quebec government pulls out of talks meant to end a mass student protest against tuition fees. Demonstrations have been ongoing since February 13, with more than 150,000 students on strike. (CBC)
Science
Sports
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References

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