2010 and 2011 Timeline

1.4.10 Dubai, United Arab Emirates, opens the Burj Khalifa, which gained the title of the “tallest building in the world,” standing at 2,717 feet (828 m). The Burj Khalifa, or Khalifa Tower, took $1.5 billion and 22 million man hours to build over five years.

1.19.10 A group of Mossad agents assassinate a senior Hamas official, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, in a Dubai hotel. The agents were tracked by surveillance video and were found to be using fake European passports.

1.29.10 Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair appears before the official British Inquiry into the 2003 war on Iraq. Blair says he has “no regrets” about his decision to go to war.

3.21.10 The third annual World Congress of Muslim Philanthropists offers a forum in Qatar for more then 250 international leaders from public and private sectors to discuss the role of social entrepreneurs and smart philanthropy in finding sustainable solutions to current global issues.

4.20.10 The Deepwater Horizon oil drilling rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico resulting in the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the oil industry. The spill lasted three months before it was contained. An estimated 53,000 barrels were leaking every day from the Macondo well before BP capped it in July.

5.16.10 A 24-year-old Muslim woman from Michigan, Rima Fakih, is crowned Miss USA despite stumbling on her dress in the evening gown competition. She is the first Muslim to win the national competition. Her win was celebrated around the Muslim and Arab worlds.

5.31.10 Nine human rights activists are killed in clashes with Israeli soldiers, who raid and capture a flotilla of ships attempting to break the Gaza economic blockade. This leads to international criticism of Israel’s sanctions on the Palestinians and more attempts to break the blockade.

6.1.10 Egypt holds first round of elections for Shura Council, the upper house of Parliament. The second round was held June 8.

7.22.10 Monsoon rains cause flooding in Pakistan, which have killed more than 1,600 people and affected 20 million.

7.25.10 WikiLeaks, an online publisher of classified government material, releases 90,000 reports and documents regarding the U.S. involvement in its war in Afghanistan from 2004-2009.

9.7.10 Mohamed El Baradei, the former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, calls on Egyptian opposition parties to boycott the 2011 presidential elections.

9.9 Florida Pastor Terry Jones calls off “International Burn a Quran Day” on the ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. His plans had stirred international controversy and protests, even drawing criticism from the Obama administration.

9.12.10 Men’s doubles team Rohan Bopanna and Aisamul- Haq Qureshi, dubbed “the Indo-Pakistan Express,” are defeated in the U.S. Open final tennis match by brothers Bob and Mike Bryan 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-4). Off the court, they work toward sending a message of world peace, especially between long-warring India and Pakistan.

9.12.10 Turkey holds a referendum to modify the constitution regarding elections law. The referendum was passed by 58 percent of the population. It was aimed at bringing Turkey into compliance with european Union standards in its bid to join the union.

9.14.10 The French Senate passes legislation to ban people from covering their faces in public, effectively banning the face veil or niqab.

10.24.10 Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s sister-in-law, Lauren Booth, announces that she has converted to Islam. The 43-year-old broadcaster and journalist cited holy experiences she felt while reporting in Iran.

10.26.10 Mount Merapi’s volcanic eruptions in Indonesia kill some 240 people and displace hundreds of thousands of others.

10.28.10 CNN reports that “Mohammed” is the most popular name for baby boys in England.

11.2.10 In the U.S. mid-term elections, the Republican party regained the majority of seats in the House of Representatives with 239 seats. The Democrats retained control of the Senate with 53 seats over the Republicans’ 46.

11.2.10 Oklahoma voters pass a measure on the state ballot that would ban state courts from considering Islamic law (Shari’a) or international law when deciding on cases. A federal judge later issues an order to keep the law out of the state constitution.

11.9.10 On his trip to Indonesia, U.S. President Barack Obama promises to strengthen ties with the Muslim world.

12.2.10 Qatar will host the 2022 World Cup Bid. This is the first time any country in the Middle East has won the bid to host the World Cup.

12.7.10 WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is arrested in Britain on charges of sex offenses. His arrest comes just after the website’s latest release of nearly a quarter million U.S. government documents, which threw into peril the U.S. reputation around the world and its relationship with Muslim allies.

12.13.10 The U.S. government sued a Chicago school district for denying a Muslim teacher’s request to perform the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. The district denied the request on the grounds that her leave was unrelated to her professional duties and not covered in her contract. The government argued that the denial was a violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by failing to accommodate her religious practices.

12.13.10 Richard Holbrooke, US Special Envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan died from a torn aorta. Holbrooke’s death is said to slow progress made towards lasting peace in the region.

12.20.10 A total lunar eclipse makes winter solstice history. NASA reveals the last winter solstice eclipse was held on December 21st, 1638 and is uncertain if an eclipse on winter solstice will ever occur in history again.

12.30 Mathaf, the Arab Museum of Modern Art, opens in Doha, Qatar featuring works by Arabs and artists living in the Middle East.

2010: in review

2011: timeline & significant events

1.10.11 First Intersessional Meeting for the U.N. Conference on Sustainable Development in New York.

1.10.11 This date marks sixty-five years since the first United Nations General Assembly convened in London in 1946.

1.14.11 One hundred fifty years ago the last sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Mehmed VI was born in 1861.

1.17.11 World Future Energy Summit will be held in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

1.20.11 The theme for the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, will be Shared Norms for the New Reality.

1.20.11 This day marks thirty years since the release of 52 American hostages from the U.S. embassy in Tehran, Iran in 1981. They were held hostage for 444 days.

2.1.11 Saudi Arabia plans to hold subnational executive elections in February.

2.19.11 Cricket World Cup begins. It is hosted in South Asia in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

2.28.11 Twenty years ago marks the end of the Guf War when the ceasefire came in to effect in 1991.

2.29.11 Fifteen years ago, in 1996, marks the end of the Bosnian war.

3.1.11 Qatar presidential elections are scheduled to take place in March.

3.16.11 Organization of the Islamic Conference will hold the 12th Session of the Islamic Summit Conference in Egypt.

3.26.11 Forty years ago Bangladesh (formerly East Pakistan) declared its independence from Pakistan in 1971.

4.1.11 Pakistan’s launch of a joint space communications satellite with ally China is scheduled to take place in April.

4.11.11 Ninety years ago the Emirate of Transjordan (now Jordan) was created in 1921.

4.14.11 Twenty-five years ago the US bombed Tripoli and Benghazi in Libya killing 60 people. Libya responded by blowing up Pan Am passenger jet over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988.

4.17.11 Sixty-five years ago Syria gained its independence from France in 1946.

4.19.11 Seventy-five years ago the Arab Revolt, or the Great Uprising, began in Palestine in 1936.

4.22.11 Earth Day will mark its 41st anniversary.

4.29.11 Twenty years ago Bangladesh was hit by the deadliest tropical cyclones ever recorded in history killing 140,000 people and leaving 10 million homeless in 1991.

5.7.11 Fifteen years ago the first international war crimes tribunal for crimes committed during the war in the former Yugoslavia opened in The Hague, Netherlands in 1996.

5.20.11 World Economic Forum on the Middle East will be held at the Dead Sea in Jordan.

6.12.11 Turkey is scheduled to hold its general elections.

6.15.11 A total lunar eclipse will be visible in the Middle East, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia.

6.19.11 Fifty years ago Kuwait earned independence from the United Kingdom in 1961.

6.20.11 Ten years ago President Pervez Musharraf became President of Pakistan in 2001.

7.17.11 The International AIDS Society will host its sixth open scientific conference on HIV/AIDS in Rome, Italy.

7.20.11 Sixty years ago King Abdullah I of Jordan was assassinated in 1951.

8.1.11 Syria is scheduled to hold parliamentary elections in August.

8.1.11 The United Nations International Year of the Youth will end.

8.12.11 Fasting for the holy month of Ramadan is scheduled to begin.

8.15.11 Forty years ago Bahrain declared independence from the UK in 1971.

8.23.11 Fifteen years ago Osama bin Laden issued his fatwa “A Declaration of War Against the Americans Occupying the Land of the Two Holy Places” in 1996.

8.23.11 Ninety years ago Faisal I became the King of Iraq in 1921.

8.30.11 Thirty years ago Iranian President Mohammad Ali Rajai and Prime Minister Mohammad Javad Bahonar were killed in a bomb plot in Tehran in 1981.

8.31.11 Eid Al Fitr (Celebration of the Feast).

9.1.11 Egypt is scheduled to hold its presidential election in September.

9.1.11 Forty years ago Qatar declared its independence from Britian in 1971.

9.5.11 Twenty-five years ago a Pan Am jet was hijacked in Karachi Pakistan by the Palestinian group Abu Nidal Organization. 22 people were killed and 150 injured in 1986.

9.11.11 Ten years ago marks the September 11th attacks in New York City. 2,973 people were killed in 2001.

9.16.11 Seventy years ago the Shah of Iran Reza Khan Pahlavi abdicated. His son Mohammad Reza Pahlavi succeeded him in 1941.

9.27.11 Fifteen years ago the Taliban seized control of Kabul Afghanistan, ousting President Burhanuddin Rabbani and executed former President Mohammad Najibullah in 1996.

10.1.11 Oman is scheduled to hold its legislative elections in October.

10.6.11 Thirty years ago the President of Egypt Anwar el-Sadat was assassinated in 1981.

10.7.11 Ten years ago the United States launched its military attack in Afghanistan in 2001.

10.12 Seventy years ago The Nazis shot more than 11,000 Jews in the Holocaust in Ukraine and buried them in mass graves in 1941.

10.16.11 Sixty years ago the first Prime Minister of Pakistan Liaquat Ali Khan was assassinated in 1951.

11.5.11 Fifteen years ago in Pakistan President Farooq Leghari dismissed Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and dissolved the National Assembly for corruption in 1996.

11.6.11 Eid Al Adha (Celebration of the Sacrifice).

11.23.11 Fifteen years ago the Ethiopian passenger plane was hijacked en route to Nairobi, Kenya. The hijackers demanded pilots to fly to Australia but the plane crashed in the Indian Ocean killing 125 people in 1996.

11.26.11 Islamic New Year.

12.2.11 Forty years ago the United Arab Emirates was founded in 1971.

12.3.11 Forty years ago marks the start of the thirteen-day Indo-Pakistani war of 1971 where millions of Bangladeshis lost their lives.

12.10.11 A total lunar eclipse will be visible in Asia and Australia.

12.14.11 Forty years ago Israel annexed the Golan Heights, occupied since 1967, in 1981.

12.16.11 Forty years ago Bangladesh was created in 1971.

12.24.11 Sixty years ago Libya delcared its independence from the United Kingdom in 1951.

12.31.11 All U.S. troops are scheduled to leave Iraq.

*Anniversaries are in RED Anniversary dates cited from: Dave and Kate Haslett

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