2003 : January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December
A timeline of events in the news for August, 2003.
- Afghanistan timeline August 2003
- California recall
- Dodgy Dossier
- Columbia investigation
- EU enlargement
- Hong Kong Basic Law
- Hutton Inquiry
- Liberian crisis
- North Korea crisis
- Occupation of Iraq: Timeline
- Road map for peace
- Same-sex marriage
- SARS: Timeline
- SCO v. IBM Linux lawsuit
- US v. EU on GM food
- US-Canada blackout
- War on Terrorism
August 31, 2003
- Tens of thousands of people turn out in Baghdad for the funeral procession of the murdered Shia Muslim leader Ayatollah Sayed Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim.  The Iraqi police handling the investigation say they have arrested 19 men in connection with the blast, many of them foreigners and all with admitted links to al-Qaeda. 
- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency declassifies carbon dioxide as a pollutant, a move seen as leading to the elimination of restrictions on industrial emissions of the controversial gas. Climate scientists have debated carbon dioxide's role in global warming for over a decade, with most voices (though notably fewer within the US) calling it the biggest factor, while others call it negligible. 
- Occupation of Iraq: Americann and Iraqi officials are discussing the possibility of forming a large Iraqi militia or paramilitary force to help improve security in the country. 
- Terrorist: Terrorism group Jemaah Islamiyah has schemes, revealed in a 40-page manifesto (the Pupji book or General Guide to the Struggle of Jemaah Islamiyah), for a suicide bombing campaign designed to change Asia and the Pacific region into Islamic provinces. Jemaah Islamiyah is also shown to be a well-formed organization with a constitution, rules of operation, and leadership structure. 
- Afghanistan: Soldiers are killed in a remote region (near the town of Shkin) near the Pakistani border. Taliban reinforcements moved into mountainous region in southern Afghanistan where U.S. and Afghan forces have been attacking hideouts in a battle over the past week. 
August 30, 2003
- Software patents: After protests, the European Parliament has postponed its decision about legality of patents on software in the European Union from September 1st to September 22nd. 
- WTO deal to allow poor countries to bypass drug patents and import cheap copies to treat AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis. 
- Natural disaster: French official first report from the Institut de Veille Sanitaire was presented to Jean-François Mattei (Health Minister). It reports 11,500 more deaths than the previous three years would be due to the heat wave of early August. It had previously been suggested that the number was 3,000.
- Russian nuclear submarine of K-159 November class sinks in the Barents Sea. The sub was decommissioned and it had 10 crew on board. The incident comes three years after Russia's worst peacetime naval disaster when all 118 crew of the nuclear submarine Kursk died when it sank in the Barents Sea on 12 August 2000. Environmental organizations say that the submarine could be dangerous for fishes, because radioactive material could leak to the sea from its two nuclear reactors. 
August 29, 2003
- Najaf, Iraq: A car bomb explodes during prayers outside the holiest shrine for Shiites, Imam Ali Mosque (Tomb of Ali), just as main weekly prayers are ending. More than 125 people are killed, including the influential cleric Ayatollah Sayed Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim, the Shiite leader of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI). Dozens are injured.  class="external">[1
August 28, 2003
- 9/11: Nearly two years after the September 11th attack on the World Trade Center, transcripts of World Trade Center emergency calls are released. Voices of victims are identified on emergency calls and radio transmissions.     
- United Kingdom - London blackout: A 34 minute power outage causes major disruptions in rail and Tube services in London and the South East when one of the National Grid circuits that feeds south London fails at about 6.15 pm. 
- Nuclear program: North Korea announces that it is in possession of nuclear weapons, has the means to deliver them, and will soon be carrying out a nuclear test to demonstrate this capability. , , , 
- Archaeology: Archaeologists have determined how big the triangle-shaped log enclosure was at Jamestown, Virginia when it was founded in 1607. 
August 27, 2003
- Astronomy: Mars passes Earth at a distance of under 55.76 million kilometers, the closest it's been in approximately 60,000 years  
- Private Jessica Lynch, whose rescue from an Iraqi hospital has been surrounded by controversy, is honourably discharged from the United States Army National Guard.
- Occupation of Iraq: According to a USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll, nearly two-thirds (63%) of Americans polled say the war in Iraq was worth fighting. 
- Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat calls on militant groups to reinstate a ceasefire they formally ended last week after a Hamas leader was killed by Israeli gunships. 
- Separation of church and state: The controversial Ten Commandments monument in Alabama's Supreme Court building is removed from public view, following a court order stating that the monument's location in the court building breaches the separation of church and state. The monument, nicknamed Roy's Holy Rock, was installed two years ago by the conservative Christian Chief Justice Roy Moore.   Only one in five (20%) Americanss approve of the federal court order under which workers removed the Ten Commandments monument from the rotunda of Alabama's state judicial building Wednesday, according to a new poll. 
- Crime: Seven people, including the gunman, are killed in a shooting in Chicago as a worker opens fire on his colleagues at a car parts store. The police shoot the gunman dead. 
- Crime: A painting by Leonardo da Vinci, the Madonna with the Yarnwinder is stolen from Drumlanrig Castle in Scotland, the home of the Duke of Buccleuch.
- Crime: A body of a woman is found in a shallow grave on a beach near Dundalk in the Republic of Ireland. It is suspected to be the body of Jean McConville, a young Belfast woman and mother of ten children kidnapped and murdered by the Provisional IRA in the mid 1970s. The IRA had suggested two years ago that McConville was buried in the vicinity. Previous attempts to find her remains had failed. 
- Crime: Two bombs explode at the Emeryville, California corporate offices of Chiron (corporation); electronic mail sent to reporters from Revolutionary Cells claims responsibility.
August 26, 2003
- War on Terrorism: President Bush, speaking to American Legion veterans convention, defends the Iraq policy, declaring the United States had hit terrorism in overthrowing the government of Saddam Hussein. President Bush vows "no retreat" from Iraq. President Bush also states that the United States may carry out other pre-emptive strikes.     
- Space Shuttle program: Columbia Accident Investigation Board (CAIB) releases 200 page final dossier over the space shuttle Columbia's destruction (and the death of its seven astronauts). It states the cause is from NASA's cultural traits, lack of funds, and insufficient safety program.    
- Technology: California Supreme Court rules that publishers could be barred from posting DVD descrambling code (DeCSS) online without infringing on free speech rights.  
- O. J. Simpson, giving an interview to Playboy, states that he is still innocent, but says "dream team" lawyers saved him. Without the money to pay for a "dream team" of lawyers, he says he would not have prevailed by being acquitted. In the interview, he also states that after his acquittal he smoked marijuana to get to sleep.    
- Former British Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath is flown home from his holiday in Salzburg, Austria to receive treatment in London for pulmonary embolism. 
August 25, 2003
- Two explosions, apparently caused by car bombs placed in taxis, kills at least 44 and injures a further 150 in Mumbai, India. It is the sixth bombing in Mumbai in a year. 
- In Australia's One Nation Party case, it has been revealed that Federal Cabinet Minister Tony Abbott controlled "slush funds" which were used to lay the groundwork for party leader Pauline Hanson's prosecution, and to guarantee a private lawsuit against the party. . Liberal ranks split as Abbot's colleague Bronwyn Bishop joined many Labor MP's in calling for disclosure of his role in the case, and described Hanson as a "political prisoner". Remarkably, the nearly defunct One Nation Party's support surged to 21% on news of Hanson's imprisonment. 
- The Tli Cho land claims agreement is signed in Canada's Northwest Territories. It grants the Dogrib people self-government in an area the size of Belgium. 
- Pete Sampras announces his retirement from competitive tennis.
- Two Iranian intelligence officers are charged in connection with the death of Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi. 
August 24, 2003
- NASA launches the Space Infrared Telescope Facility on a Delta 2 rocket. 
- Hurricane Ignacio approaches the coast of Baja California. Harbours and airports close and low-lying areas are evacuated. 
- Little League World Series: Tokyo, Japan defeats Boynton Beach, Florida, 10-1. The Tokyo team went undefeated in the tournament, defeating the Saudi Arabia team 17-0, with a perfect game pitched by four Japanese pitchers, and the mercy rule invoked after four innings.
August 23, 2003
- In an unprecedented move, the British government submit thousands of official documents (many of which would not normally be seen by the public for 30 years) to the Hutton Inquiry, and publication on the Internet. class="external">[1
August 22, 2003
- A Brazilian Space Agency VLS-1 space rocket explodes on its launch-pad at Alcantara space base, killing at least 21 people. It is thought that one of the rocket's four motors caught fire; the subsequent explosion destroyed the rocket, its cargo of two satellites, and the launch-pad, as well as the deaths of many of Brazil's space-specialists, causing an estimated US$12m worth of damage. This ends Brazil's third attempt since 1997 at becoming a space power. class="external">[1
August 21, 2003
- Occupation of Iraq: General Ali Hassan al-Majid (Chemical Ali) is reportedly captured in Iraq. He had previously been reported dead.   
- Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Israel kills senior Hamas official, Ismail Abu Shanab, by a missile strike in the Gaza Strip and sent tanks into the West Bank towns of Nablus, Jenin and Tulkarem in response to a deadly suicide bombing of a bus in Jerusalem. In Hebron, troops destroy the terrorist bomber's home.   Hamas and Islamic Jihad end their participation in the cease fire (in response to Israel's action from the two groups' bombing), declaring themselves as enemies to the peace plan, and vow further terrorist acts.      The militants demand that Palestinian prime minister, Mahmoud Abbas, leave their area of control.
- Canadian transport minister David Collenette announces that Montreal Dorval International Airport will be renamed in September for former prime minister Pierre Trudeau. 
August 20, 2003
- War on Terrorism - Canal Hotel: US officials comment terror group linked to al Qaeda, Ansar al-Islam, is emerging as a top suspect in the U.N. headquarters bombing in Baghdad. "It's part of a global war against terrorism that was officially declared on us on September 11. It's quite clear we do have terrorists inside Iraq now." 
- Natural disaster: French undertakers state that 10,000 more French people died during the early August summer heatwave than the first two weeks of August in 2002. It had previously been suggested that the number was 3,000. President Jacques Chirac demands reports from cabinet ministers on the crisis, while in Italy the newspaper La Repubblica suggests that Italy had 2000 more deaths than normal due to the heatwave. 
- A 4-week-old boy, born to Nigerian parents, dies after a botched home circumcision by a friend of the boy's parents, in the Republic of Ireland. The Garda Siochána are searching for the man, who had no medical qualifications. 
- One of the holiest sites in Jerusalem, known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Haram al-Sharif or the Noble Sanctuary, is re-opened to controversy. Jerusalem's police chief, Mickey Levey says the decision was taken before the most recent suicide bombing. However the decision is condemned by the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheikh Ekrima Sabri, who says the re-opening was done without the agreement of the Waqf, the Muslim authority that oversees the site. Palestinians from outside Jerusalem who are under the age of 40 are currently barred from entering. The compound includes the al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock. 
- California recall: Republican recall candidate Arnold Schwarzenegger promises to take quick action. 
- A computer worm called W32.Welchia.Worm infects computers across the internet. The virus has been labeled "good" by some, because it attempts to remove W32.Blaster.Worm, and downloads the Windows security patch which prevents W32.Blaster.Worm infections before spreading to other computers. It will also remove itself once the date hits 2004.     
- Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Palestinian prime minister, Mahmoud Abbas, breaks negotiations with the Islamic militant groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad in response to the bombing in Jerusalem.  Israel notifies the public that it will retaliate with military strikes for bus bombing.  There are conflicting reports that Israel will hold off on the attacks to see if the Palestinian administration takes action against terrorist groups. 
- Fighting persists in Chechnya, with six Russian servicemen killed and 11 others wounded in the war-ravaged region.
- Pauline Hanson, former leader of the Australian anti-immigration One Nation Party, is sentenced in Queensland to three years in prison for electoral fraud.
- Afghanistan: Afghan President Hamid Karzai's spokesman comments that the issue of Taliban crossing into Afghanistan from Pakistan will be discussed during Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri's visit to Kabul. Afghanistan claims Pakistani based Taliban have killed many Afghan soldiers. 
August 19, 2003
- War on Terrorism - Canal Hotel: A truck bomb explosion at the Baghdad Canal Hotel that houses the United Nations mission kills at least 17 people and injures over 100. Among the casualties is Sérgio Vieira de Mello, U.N. special representative in Iraq. The bomb damages a hospital nearby, and the shockwave is felt a mile away.   
- 20 killed, 136 wounded by an explosion on board an Israeli bus in Jerusalem. Among the victims are several children. The explosion was caused by a Palestinian suicide bomber. The Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Hebron claims responsibility for the attack. There are conflicting reports that Hamas is reponsible for the bombing. Israeli government reportedly freezes road map for peace negotiations. In the following days, two additional victims died of their wounds, raising the death toll to 22.    
- War on Terrorism: A Moroccan court sentences four men to death and jails 83 others for their involvement in a wave of terror attacks in Casablanca that killed 33 bystanders and a dozen suicide bombers in May 2003. The trial involved dozens of defendants accused of belonging to a clandestine Moroccan group, the Salafia Jihadia. Moroccan authorities have linked the group to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network.
- Occupation of Iraq: Iraqi Vice President Taha Yassin Ramadan, disguised as an Arab Bedouin, has been captured. Ramadan served as Saddam's thug and a member of Iraq's Revolutionary Command Council. Kurdish group claims responsibility for the capture of Ramadan. He was handed over to Coalition forces in Mosul.   
- Afghanistan celebrates its Independence Day amid one of the bloodiest weeks in a year, with heavily armed guerrillas killing at least nine policemen in the latest in a string of ambushes. In the last week, the country has been battered by an onslaught from insurgents, who are believed to be a mix of guerrillas from the ousted Taliban regime, al-Qaida fighters and supporters of renegade warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. 
- The International Survivors Action Committee releases a 152-page report on the controversial Tranquility Bay behavior correction facility.
- Natural disaster: Start of the Booth and Bear Butte forest fires in the Cascade Mountains, the worst fire in Oregon of this year. Within three days the resort community of Camp Sherman is evacuated, affecting 1,500 residents and campers, closure of US highway 20 over Santiam Pass, and burning at least 41,000 acres.
August 18, 2003
- War on Terrorism: Arab television airs an audio tape allegedly from al Qaeda official Abdel Rahman al-Najdi saying Osama bin Laden and Taliban chief Mullah Omar are alive. The tape advocates Muslims to commit terroristic acts and fight the Coalition forces in Iraq.   
- Terroristss associated with al-Qaida releases a statement in which it claims responsibility for the blackout. The statement says that the group acted on Osama bin Laden's orders. , , 
August 17, 2003
- Major blackout: investigators now believe the blackout began in Ohio. FirstEnergy Corporation, which services 1.4 million people in the state, released a statement Saturday that three of its transmission lines tripped off at Unit 5 of their Eastlake Plant hours before the blackout, and may have been its cause. 
- Terrorists again fired on children in Gorazdevac, near Pec, this time while they were in the center of the village. No children were injured in this incident, just 4 days since the last. 
- Saboteurss cause a series of explosions that damaged oil and water pipelines in Iraq. class="external">[1
August 16, 2003
- Major blackout: Power is now restored in New York City, Toronto, and most of Ottawa. Authorities warn of possible future disruptions and advise conservation as work continues to restore power to the entire grid. Theories as to the cause of the event, meanwhile, are becoming more substantial and coherent .
- West Virginia: Kanawha County Sheriff's office reports that a string of four fatal shootings over the past week were linked by ballistics testing to the same type of weapon. The perpetrator(s) remain at large. class="external">[1
August 15, 2003
- Power is restored to many, but not all areas of the north-eastern United States and Canada affected by the previous day's blackout . Investigations into the root cause of the grid collapse are currently focusing on transmission lines circling Lake Erie .
- Libya formally accepts responsibility for the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103. It consists of general language that lacks expression of remorse for lives lost.  Although some claim the acceptance is just a business deal and not a true admission of guilt. 
- Prince Hans-Adam II of Liechtenstein announces that he will abdicate the throne in 2004, in favor of his son, Prince Alois.
August 14, 2003
- A major power outage due to a power grid failure affects more than 50 million people in the northeast of North America, including New York City, New Jersey, Cleveland, Ottawa, Toronto and Detroit    ABC BBC CNN. According to U.S. authorities, the cause is still unclear; according to the Canadian Department of National Defense, the chain reaction was started by a lightning strike in the Niagara Falls region on the U.S. side of the border . A press release with some technical details of the event is a available at . The NRC reports that all 9 affected nuclear power plants have been safely shut down .
- Heat wave: French health officials estimate that as many as 3,000 people may have died in France as a result of the heat wave. Fatalities and illnesses are swamping the French health system. The city of Paris launches its Plan blanc emergency response procedure. However, temperatures in Paris have now dropped from 40°C to 30°C. 
- SARS: Public health officials are investigating seven deaths and several infections in an outbreak that resembles, but is not believed to be, SARS in a nursing home in Surrey, British Columbia (a suburb of Vancouver). However, until more is known about the disease, the home will be treated as a SARS site for safety's sake. 
- A single-celleded microbe, of the domain Archaea, is found to be able to survive at 121°C (250°F), making it the life form that can tolerate the highest temperature. The microbe, temporarily named Strain 121, which was found 200 miles away from Puget Sound in a hydrothermal vent, may provide clues to when and where life first evolved on Earth. It metabolizes by reducing iron oxide.    
- Terrorism: Hambali, an important leader of Jemaah Islamiyah, is in U.S. custody after being captured in Thailand. 
- Liberian crisis: News services are reporting that Moses Blah met with Sekou Conneh of the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD) group and Thomas Nimley of a smaller faction known as Model. Meanwhile, the Pentagon expands the United States' military presence by adding a "quick reaction" force of 150 combat troops to back up Nigerian peacekeepers.  
- Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Israel frees another 76 prisoners, a week after releasing more than 300 people. Israel argues that it is a gesture of goodwill and in accordance with agreements. The Palestinian authority disagrees and says that most not arrested for terrorist activities, and that it was the people arrested for the latter that Israel originally agreed to release. Palestinian officials want the release of 6000 prisoners, many of whom it claims were wrongly arrested, to obtain public support for the US-backed road map for peace. 
August 13, 2003
- Ivan Jovovic and Bogdan Bukomiric, both 16 years old, from Gorazdevac near Pec die after two attackers fired from AK-47 on group of children from Gorazdevac who were bathing in river Bistrica. Four children got injured in the attack, two of which are in critical condition. UNMIK and KFOR claimed that they transferred one of them, Marko Bogicevic, to Belgrade, but he is actually in German military hospital at Prizren, against his parents' wishes. Italian KFOR patrol refused to borrow fuel to car which was transporting wounded children to hospital in Pec, when it ran out of fuel, and took no action when car was stoned by local Albanians. After finally arriving to Pec, doctors there refused to treat the children. KFOR claims that it researches the location of the incident with 300 men.
- Discovery of a Saudi Arabia airplane plot. Intelligence agencies producing alerts and relaying them to Washington, D.C, and London of a specific threat to airlines flying around Riyadh international airport. The plan to shoot down a British Airways plane was discovered after a member of the plot drove his car through a checkpoint in Riyadh. In response to the threat BA cancels all flights to Saudi Arabia until further notice. The United States issues a travel alert for Saudi Arabia citing the threat of terrorism including potential attacks against civil aviation.   
- Iraq's northern oil fields resumes exports. 
- Arnold Schwarzenegger names Warren Buffett as his economic adviser on Wednesday. Mr Buffett will help the actor build a team to lead the state out of its fiscal crisis. 
- Disgraced Irish former Taoiseach Charles J. Haughey sells his historic home and estate, Kinsealy, in north Dublin to a property developer for 35 million euro. The former taoiseach, whose financial dealings and tax-evasion is the subject of a judicial inquiry and which have largely destroyed his reputation, bought the palatial mansion, for £120,000 in the 1960s. Haughey, who is suffering from terminal prostate cancer, will not be allowed to remain in the house as a sitting tenant for the rest of his life, a demand of his which scuppered past attempts to sell.
- Same-sex marriage in Canada: At its convention in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, the United Church of Canada votes overwhelmingly to ask the federal government to allowsame-sex marriage.
- A National Geographic team releases the discovery of a new species of large dinosaur, Rajasaurus Narmadensis, native to the Indian subcontinent. The research effort was made by a joint Indo-American group, including members from the University of Michigan, University of Chicago, and the Punjab University of Northern India. 
August 12, 2003
- War on Terrorism: An exclusive BBC report says a joint United States, Russia and United Kingdom "sting" halted a plot to shoot down Air Force One using an Igla surface to air missile. According to the BBC, the plot, initially unearthed by the Russians, led President Vladimir Putin to request that an FBI agent go to St. Petersburg, where the agent posed as an Islamic extremist and met the British arms dealer supplying the missile. The missile was shipped from St. Peterburg to Baltimore in the United States. The British arms dealer "arranging" the deal was arrested when he arrived in Newark, New Jersey in the United States today. The White House has publicly denied that Air Force One was to be the target of the missile. However Tom Mangold, the BBC veteran investigative reporter who broke the story, claims the British dealer supplying the missile recommended to the undercover FBI agent that the President's jet, rather than a commerical jet, be the target, saying that he could get another 60 Ingla missiles which could then be used to launch a co-ordinated attack on Air Force One. 
- Occupation of Iraq: The Associated Press is reporting that troopss in Iraq should expect to serve for at least a year according to the commander of United States forces.      
- George W. Bush nominates former NGA chairman and current governor of Utah, Michael O. Leavitt for administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. 
- Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Two Israelis killed and about a dozen wounded in two separate suicide bombings by Palestinian terrorists in the towns of Rosh-Ha'ayin and Ariel. Hamas and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades claimed responsibility for the attacks. The IDF retaliated on Wednesday by demolishing the house in Nablus where the bomber in the Rosh Ha-Ayin attack lived with his family, an activity which is specifically outlawed as a war crime by the Fourth Geneva Convention.
- The Serbian government has indicated that it wants to retake control of the province of Kosovo, arguing that the United Nations, which currently has control, has failed to reestablish the rule of law.  
- Sir Jocelyn Gore-Booth announces the sale of the historic Lissadell estate in County Sligo in Ireland, the childhood home of early twentieth century Irish republican Constance Gore-Booth (Countess Markievicz) and which had major associations with the poet W.B. Yeats. Critics condemn the Irish government for failing to buy the estate; Sir Jocelyn had offered it first refusal. The identity of the buyer has not yet been revealed but rock singer Bono had shown major interest in the property. 
- The remains of a viking warrior are found at a building site in Dublin. The warrior had been stabbed to death during a ninth century viking raid on Dubhlinn monastery. The dagger was still attached to his body when his remains were found. The archaeological dig is expected to continue at the site for six months.
- The Rev. Peter Short is elected Moderator of the United Church of Canada, the country's largest Protestant denomination, in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. 
- Microsoft has decided to appeal a verdict to pay $520.6 million from a Chicago federal jury that affirms the Internet Explorer browser violated Intellectual Property rights of Eolas Technologies (concerning Patent US 5838906).  
August 11, 2003
- Liberian president Charles Taylor resigns. He is replaced by vice-president Moses Blah. 
- 2003 California recall: New California voter survey finds nearly two-thirds of the state's voters want a new governor.    
- Herb Brooks, the coach of the 1980 US gold medal ice hockey team that beat the Soviet Union in a game that was called The Miracle on Ice, dies in a car accident.
- African church leader, Archbishop Bernard Malango, states that the leaders of 600,000 Anglicans in Malawi, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe informed him they would could cut ties with the United States organization unless the appointment of an openly gay bishop is overturned. The Anglican Church in Kenya also demanded a reversal.   
- European heat wave: Parisian health authorities charge that fifty people have died in Paris owing to the heat wave, particularly elderly people, and that the government is ignoring the crisis.  In Catalonia, five people from one family are killed by a wildfire that encircles their home. Four villages are evacuated in the Algarve. 
- Doctors in Montreal successfully deliver by Caesarean section a healthy baby who grew in an ectopic pregnancy. Such a pregnancy, which begins outside the womb, is all but invariably fatal to the fetus and is extremely dangerous to the mother. The woman and her doctors were unaware of the ectopic pregnancy until she went into labour. 
- Lord Hutton's inquiry into the death of British scientist Dr. David Kelly begins in London. 
- The Spirit of Butts Farm becomes the first radio-controlled model aeroplane to cross the Atlantic.
August 10, 2003
- 100,000 attend a rally in the French countryside to condemn next month's round of trade liberalisation talks being held under auspices of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Cancun in Mexico. 
- British police in London are given 'shoot-on-sight' orders to deal with possible suicide bombers by Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir John Stevens as expectations rise of an Al-Qaeda attack on the British capital. 
- War on Terrorism: The Sunday Times reports that Al-Qaeda terrorists have infiltrated Iraq from surrounding Arab countries and have aligned themselves with former intelligence agents of Saddam Hussein to fight the Coalition forces. Their attacks have killed Coalition soliders and Iraqi police officers, among others. 
- Pope John Paul II urges Catholics to pray for rain in Europe as the heat wave continues. The heatwave in Britain reaches 100° Fahrenheit (just under 38° Celsius) at Heathrow, for the first time in history.  Warnings of avalanches are issued in the Alps, as mountain glaciers melt.
- Liberian President and convicted war criminal Charles Taylor, who is to step down tomorrow, has appealed to rebels to 'submit to the democratic process'. He also accuses the United States of funding the rebels who have besieged the capital, Monrovia for a week. 
- The Russian space program has the been the first to send a man, a dog, a woman, and a tourist into space. And it may be the first to marry a couple in space. Yuri Malenchenko (41), aboard the international space station, and his bride, Yekaterina Dmitriyeva (26) in Texas, are making preparations for what seems to be the first cosmic wedding.    
- The British Conservative Party leader Iain Duncan Smith demands that Prime Minister Tony Blair apologise for the comments of his press secretary, Tom Kelly, in which Kelly compared Dr. David Kelly, the BBC source who took his own life after his identity was revealed by the Ministry of Defence, to the fictional Walter Mitty character. 
- 16-year-old Israeli killed and five other injured in Hizbollah shelling on the northern Israeli town of Shlomi. Israeli planes attacked Hezbollah targets in Lebanon in response to the shelling. Some sources claim Hezbollah's attack was a response to Israel's car bomb assassination of Hezbollah member Ali Hussein Saleh in Beirut on August 3 which also seriously injured 2 passers-by. 
- While Retired South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his successor, Archbishop Njongonkulu Winston Ndungane, fails to see what "all the fuss" is over the ordination of a gay bishop, other African Anglicans suggest that their churches may sever relations with the American dioceses which supported the election of a gay priest as bishop if what they called the "path of deviation" is not changed.  
August 9, 2003
- A historic heat wave continues to afflict Europe and is expected to continue for another week. Spain and Portugal are particularly hard hit; forest fires in Portugal are declared a national disaster, with damages estimated at €1 billion. Other fires are reported on Majorca and in the Canary Islands. Temperatures of 49°C are recorded in Andalusia. London records its highest temperature in history. The cause of the heat wave is believed to be a stagnant air mass over the Sahara sending hot air as far north as Sweden. 
- Occupation of Iraq: United States Central Command military officials confirm that Mahmoud Diyab al-Ahmed, the Iraqi Minister of Interior was in its custody. He occupies the number 29 position on the U.S. list of most-wanted Iraqis. The Iraqi Minister of Interior surrendered to coalition forces yesterday. He was the seven of spades on the deck of cards distributed to U.S. troops.   
- SCO v. IBM Linux lawsuit: Aduva, Inc., a Linux developing company, releases this week a tool to allow companies to replace any offending Linux code, if it exists, with code that does not infringe on SCO's intellectual property rights.    It is unknown how this tool will work, as SCO has not disclosed which code it considers infringing.
- The city of Vyborg commence the 600-years anniversary of King Eric of Pomerania establishing the town's trading privileges in a Royal Charter.
August 8, 2003
- Hezbollah, a militant Lebanese group backed by Syria and Iran, fires artillery toward Israeli border posts, drawing return fire. It was the first such exchange in eight months. AP story]
- A Ma'ariv opinion poll shows 37% of his supporters think Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is involved in corruption, with 52% saving he will have to resign if he behaved illegally. The controversy is over a $1.5 million loan given in January 2002 to Sharon's son, Gilad that was the loan originated from Cyril Kern, a friend of Ariel Sharon. 
- Occupation of Iraq: At his ranch in Crawford, Texas, President Bush noted the 100th day since overt military action in Iraq ended, saying that the United States has made "good progress" in helping Iraq's democratic processeses, overall security, and economy.   
- US v. EU on GM food: The European Union expresses their disapproval over the American, Canadian and Argentinian effort to launch a World Trade Organization formal challenge against its decision to keep the policy of banning genetically modified crops.   
- SCO v. IBM Linux lawsuit: IBM furnishes more information on their SCO countersuit and states that they have Novell support.   
- War on Terrorism: According to the latest disclosed analysis of the cockpit recordingss by the United States investigators, the September 11th terrorist-pilot Ziad Jarrah got instructions to crash the United Airlines flight 93 into the Pennsylvania farmland because of the passenger uprising in the cabin trying to seize the plane's controls.    
- Michael Johnston, a prominent "ex-gay" Christian, is said to have engaged in unprotected gay sex, despite his own opposition to homosexuality. , , 
- It is reported that the Canadian Grand Prix is dropped from the 2004 Formula 1 calendar as a result of its anti-tobacco laws. The Montreal race was given a grace of 7 years before the introduction of the new law, announced in 1997. This comes a week after it was announced that the Belgian GP will be re-introduced in the 2004 season.  However, Formula One director general Bernie Ecclestone says that no such decision has been made. 
- The draft EU constitution could lead to the establishment of foreign-owned private health care and educational services. 
August 7, 2003
- 2003 California recall: Republican Darrell Issa, the person behind the effort of recall election of Gray Davis, quickly and without warning dropped out of the gubernatorial race.  
- Convicted terrorist, Real IRA leader Michael McKevitt, found guilty yesterday by the Republic of Ireland's Special Criminal Court of "membership of an illegal organisation" and "directing terrorism", is sentenced to twenty years in prison. 
- An Indonesian court sentences Amrozi bin Nurhasyim to death for his role in the 2002 Bali terrorist bombing. The court found Amrozi guilty of planning and carrying out the attack. The verdict comes two days after another attack outside Marriott Hotel in Jakarta. Jemaah Islamiyah is linked with both of the attacks. 
- Occupation of Iraq: A car bomb explodes near the Jordanian Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq. At least 10 people are killed and more than 30 are injured. The bomb, hidden in a minibus, is believed to be detonated remotely. 
- Liberian crisis: President Charles Taylor resigns as Nigerian peacekeepers entered Liberia. Taylor names his vice president, Moses Blah, as his successor. Peacekeepers intercepted an arms shipment to Liberia from Libya. Taylor, who is indicted for war crimes, indicates that he will seek asylum in Nigeria. 
August 6, 2003
- 2003 California recall: Arnold Schwarzenegger announces he will run for Governor of California in the recall election of Gray Davis.   
- Florida is set to begin paying $1.6 million in fees to pilot/database guru and alleged former drug smuggler turned government informant Hank Asher in payment for his Matrix system, a rapidly searchable database combining existing police records and several large commercially available computer databases. Civil libertarians are outraged at the system, claiming it is Orwellian and reminiscent of the Federal Total Information Awareness program. The United States Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security are providing funds to expand Matrix coverage to the entire country.   
- An Italian laboratory announces the birth of the world's first cloned horse, Prometea. 
- The United States Pentagon establishes that a unit of military personnel has arrived in Liberia, coordinating support for the West African peacekeepers in the country.  
- North Korea and Iran are planning to form an alliance to develop long-range ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads. Under the plan, North Korea will transport missile parts to Iran for assembly at a plant near Tehran, Iran.   
- Real IRA leader Michael McKevitt is convicted in the Republic of Ireland's Special Criminal Court of two terrorist offences, "directing terrorism" and "membership of an illegal organisation". One of the key witnesses was David Rupert, an FBI agent who posed as a member of the Real IRA to get close to McKevitt. The three judges of the SCC will sentence McKevitt later. 
August 5, 2003
- A powerful car bomb explodes outside the Marriott Hotel, killing at least fourteen people and injuring about 150 in downtown Jakarta, a popular district for foreigners. It is believed to be a suicide bombing. The blast comes two days before a Bali court was due to deliver the verdict of the first suspect of the 2002 Bali terrorist bombing and four days after President Megawati Sukarnoputri vowed to wipe out terrorist networks in Indonesia. Jemaah Islamiyah claimed responsibility for the attack through a Singapore newspaper. class="external">[1
August 4, 2003
- Construction workers of Qiqihar, Heilongjiang Province, People's Republic of China accidentally dig out five Japanese mustard gas bombs from the Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945). Two of the bombs are damaged, and the gas poisons 43 (one died 19 days later). Japan a week later accepts responsibility and sends doctors and compensation to China. 
- The clergy and lay people of the Episcopal Church in the United States, by a comfortable margin, vote in favor of the appointment of an openly gay bishop. The vote is thought likely to get confirmation from the bishops' collegium, which however is delayed due to last minute independent allegations of misconduct and intense conservative opposition. class="external">[1
August 2, 2003
- The Daily Telegraph in the United Kingdom claims attempts by the British Ministry of Defence (MoD) to destroy allegedly important documents about its treatment of BBC source Dr. David Kelly in the weeks before his suicide were foiled by a security guard, who found the documents scheduled for destruction and called the police. The MoD insists the documents were not that important but will now be preserved and supplied to the Hutton Inquiry into the Kelly case.
- The United Nations authorizes an international peacekeeping force for Liberia. The United States is criticized by members of the Security Council for insisting that UN peacekeepers serving in Liberia be granted immunity from war crimes prosecution. The U.S. demand is described by its critics as a breach of international law.
- A huge condominium complex under construction in San Diego, California is destroyed, supposedly by the Earth Liberation Front. 
- José Bové, a radical French activist against genetically modified food, is released from prison after serving only five weeks of a 10-month jail sentence.
- Israeli Attorney General Elyakim Rubinstein publicly rebukes Ariel Sharon's son Gilad for refusing to cooperate with an investigation into graft and influence peddling. 
- Scientists announce that the ozone layer may be showing signs of recovery due to an international ban on chlorofluorocarbons. 
August 1, 2003
- A truck bomb destroys a military hospital in Mozdok in Southern Russia, near Chechnya, killing 41 and wounding at least 76. The Russian government blames the attack on Chechen separatists. A media spokesman for rebel political leader, Aslan Maskhadov, denied any connection with the incident. 
- North Korea agrees to multilateral talks in its nuclear standoff with Japan, South Korea, Russia, The United States, and the People's Republic of China. 
- The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health plans to propose an amendment to Finnish tobacco legislation which would make retail sales of tobacco products subject to a licence. \n