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Reuters historical calendar - March 19

Written by: Staff

London, Mar 18 (Reuters) Following are some of the major events to have occurred on March 19 since 1900: 1920 - The United States refused to ratify the Versailles Treaty, and so join the League of Nations, for fear of being drawn into a war if another member country was invaded.

1930 - Arthur Balfour, British Conservative prime minister, died. He is best known for the Balfour Declaration, which promised Jewish people a homeland in Palestine.

1932 - Australia's Sydney Harbour Bridge opened.

1944 - German troops occupy Hungary during World War Two.

1950 - Edgar Rice Burroughs, American author of the ''Tarzan'' stories, died.

1964 - The Great St Bernard Tunnel under the Alps between Switzerland and Italy opened.

1970 - The heads of the West and East German governments, Willy Brandt and Willi Stoph, met at Erfurt. It was the first such meeting since Germany was divided in 1945.

1978 - The UN Security Council voted to send an interim force to Lebanon after a heavy Israeli air raid five days earlier.

1982 - An Argentine scrap metal dealer landed on British-ruled South Georgia and planted an Argentine flag. The gesture eventually led to the Falklands War with Britain.

1996 - Sarajevo became a united city again after four years when Muslim-Croat authorities took control of the last Serb-held district.

1999 - Libya agreed to hand over to Scottish justice the two suspects in the 1988 bombing of a Pan Am airliner over Lockerbie, Scotland.

2000 - Longtime opposition leader Abdoulaye Wade was elected president of Senegal, ending 40 unbroken years of Socialist Party government.

2001- Socialist Bertrand Delanoe won the mayoral election in Paris and the Left took power in the capital for the first time in 130 years.

2001 - Australia's largest resources group, BHP, announced a billion merger with London-listed Billiton to create the world's second biggest minerals and metals giant.

2002 - The favourite son of former autocrat Suharto, Tommy, stood trial over charges he masterminded the slaying of a judge.

2002 - Zimbabwe was suspended from the Commonwealth for one year.

2002 - Marco Biagi, an author of Italian premier Berlusconi's controversial reforms, making it easier for firms to hire and fire employees, was shot dead in Bologna.

2003 - British and US aircraft dropped nearly 2 million leaflets into Iraq, targeting 29 military and civilian sites in the southeastern part of the country prior to an invasion.

2004 - Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian survived an assassination attempt in the city of Tainan while campaigning for the presidential election, escaping with a bullet wound to the stomach. Vice President Annette Lu was also wounded.

2005 - John DeLorean, the US automotive executive whose flashy car of the same name proved a financial folly but burned its way into pop culture with the ''Back to the Future'' films, died aged 80.


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