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Saturday, January 2

Saturday, January 2

Today is Saturday, Jan. 2, the second day of 2016. There are 363 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

1492 - The leader of the last Arab stronghold in Spain surrenders to the Spanish forces loyal to King Ferdinand II and Queen Isabella I.

1799 - Britain joins Russian-Turkish alliance; Napoleon Bonaparte advances into Syria.

1900 - Open-door policy in China is announced by U.S. Secretary of State John Hay.

1905 - Japanese General Nogi receives a letter offering surrender from Russian General Stoessel, thereby formally ending the Russo-Japanese War.

1909 - Dismissal of Yuan Shih-kai places Chinese administration in Manchu hands.

1913 - Turkish garrison on Chios Island surrenders to Greeks.

1932 - Manchukuo Republic is proclaimed in Manchuria, China.

1937 - English and Italians sign agreement on Mediterranean and in favor of maintaining Spain's independence.

1942 - Japanese capture Philippine capital, Manila, during World War II. Twenty-two nations add their signatures to the U.N. Declaration, already signed by the U.S., UK, U.S.S.R. and China.

1965 - Ayub Khan wins Pakistan's presidential elections.

1971 - Sixty-six people suffocate or are trampled to death when crowd barrier gives way at a soccer match in Glasgow, Scotland.

1976 - Soviet Union hardens its stand on emigration despite 1975 Helsinki Agreement to permit freer movement of people and ideas in Europe.

1983 - The musical "Annie," based on the "Little Orphan Annie" comic strip, closes on Broadway in New York after a run of 2,377 performances.

1988 - Right-wing guerrillas ambush train near Mozambique's western border, killing at least 22 people and injuring 71.

1992 - Military commanders in Croatia agree to stop fighting within 24 hours to allow for dispatch of up to 10,000 U.N. peacekeepers.

1995 - Less than 24 hours after Russian troops say they have taken Grozny, the capital of the separatist Chechnya region, rebels beat them back from the city center.

1996 - U.S. government dietary guidelines acknowledge for the first time that consuming some alcohol can be healthy.

1997 - Kofi Annan arrives at U.N. headquarters for the first time as secretary-general.

2001 - Ships from outlying Taiwanese islands dock in ports in mainland China, making the first legal and direct crossing between the mainland and Taiwanese territory in more than 50 years.

2003 - Chinese space officials announce plans to launch a manned spacecraft in the second half of the year. The Oct. 15 launch of the Shenzhou 5 mission carrying astronaut Yang Liwei makes China the third nation, after Russia and the United States, to do so.

2005 - After the devastation wreaked by the seas, a deluge from the skies deepens the misery for tsunami-stricken areas, triggering flash floods in Sri Lanka that send evacuees fleeing and increasing the threat of deadly disease.

2006 - The roof of an ice rink in Germany collapses after a heavy snowfall in a town in the Bavarian Alps, killing 15 people and injuring dozens.

2009 - Sri Lankan forces capture the Tamil Tigers' de facto capital, Kilinochchi.

2011 - The United Nations says that it will do everything it can to locate areas where human rights abuses have allegedly occurred in Ivory Coast following disputed presidential elections.

2013 - The United Nations gives a grim new count of the human cost of Syria's civil war, saying the death toll has exceeded 60,000 in 21 months -- far higher than recent estimates by anti-regime activists.

2014 - The New York Times and Guardian newspapers call for clemency for Edward Snowden, saying that the espionage worker- turned-privacy advocate should be praised rather than punished for his disclosures.

2014 -- The United States imposes fresh sanctions on North Korea, targeting the North's defense industry and spy service in an attempt to punish Pyongyang for a crippling cyberattack against Sony.

Today's Birthdays:

James Wolfe, English general (1727-1759); Nouri Said, Iraqi prime minister (1888-1958); Michael Tippett, English musician (1905-1998); Isaac Asimov, Russian-born U.S. writer (1920-1992); Todd Haynes, U.S. director (1961--); Cuba Gooding Jr., U.S. actor (1968--); Christy Turlington, U.S. model (1969--); Taye Diggs, U.S. actor (1971--).

Thought for Today:

It is the tragedy of the world that no one knows what he doesn't know -- and the less a man knows, the more sure he is that he knows everything -- Joyce Cary, British author (1888-1957).