Chronology of news events in 2015

AP News
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Posted: Dec 25, 2015 5:42 PM

AUGUST

Aug. 1

— A wing flap suspected to be from the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 arrives at a French military testing facility where experts try to determine if that is the case.

Aug. 2

— Zimbabwe accuses an American doctor of illegally killing a lion in April, adding to the outcry over an American dentist that the African government wants to extradite for killing a well-known lion named Cecil in early July.

Aug. 3

— A British judge sentences a former Citibank and UBS trader to 14 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of masterminding the manipulation of a key interest rate that affects everything from mortgages to giant corporate loans.

Aug. 4

— Israel launches a promised crackdown on Jewish extremists after a deadly arson attack on a Palestinian family the previous week, arresting a high-profile activist accused of leading a new movement of settler youth who embrace violence.

Aug. 5

— President Barack Obama assails critics of his Iran nuclear deal as 'selling fantasy' to the American people, warning Congress that blocking the accord would damage the nation's credibility and increase the likelihood of more war in the Middle East.

Aug. 6

— Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi presides over the unveiling of a major extension of the Suez Canal that he hails as a historical feat needed to revive the country's ailing economy after years of unrest.

Aug. 7

— A series of recent dipl0omatic maneuvers involving Saudi Arabia suggest a growing willingness to at least engage with the Iranian-backed government of Bashar Assad on ways to end Syria's civil war.

Aug. 8

— A typhoon pounds southeast China, leaving more than a million homes without power after lashing Taiwan and killing at least six people.

Aug. 9

— Israel intensifies its crackdown on Jewish extremists, imprisoning two high-profile ultranationalist Israelis for six months without charge and arresting additional suspects in West Bank settlement outposts.

Aug. 10

— A power plant operator in southern Japan has restarted a nuclear reactor, the first to begin operating under new safety requirements following the Fukushima disaster.

Aug. 11

— China rattles global financial markets by devaluing its currency — an effort in part to revive economic growth — in the biggest one-day change in a decade.

Aug. 12

— Islamic State sympathizers circulate an image that appears to show the grisly aftermath of a Croatian hostage abducted in Egypt, the first such killing of a foreign captive since the extremist group established a branch in the Arab country.

Aug. 13

— Death toll mounts to dozens and hundreds are injured in huge chemical explosions at a warehouse in the busy northern Chinese port of Tianjin.

Aug. 14

— The American flag rises over the newly reopened U.S. Embassy in Cuba after a half century of often-hostile relations. Secretary of State John Kerry celebrates the day but also makes an extraordinary, nationally broadcast call for democratic change on the island.

Aug.15

— Emperor Akihito expresses rare "deep remorse" over his country's wartime actions in an address marking the 70th anniversary of Japan's World War II surrender, a day after the prime minister fell short of apologizing to the victims of Japanese aggression. .

Aug. 16.

— Tens of thousands of Brazilians across the country demonstrate their discontent with President Dilma Roussef who is grappling with a snowballing corruption scandal and a sputtering economy.

Aug. 17

— A bomb explodes within a central Bangkok shrine that is among the city's most popular tourist spots, killing at least 20 people and injuring more than 100 across a hectic intersection surrounded by five-star hotels and upscale shopping malls.

Aug. 18

— The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approves the world's first prescription drug designed to boost sexual desire in women.

Aug. 19

— Islamic State militants behead a leading Syrian antiquities scholar who spent most of his life looking after the ancient ruins of Palmyra, then hang his body from a pole in a main square of the historic town.

Aug. 20

— Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter tells the world he has cancer in his brain and feels "perfectly at ease with whatever comes."

Aug. 21

— Global markets plunge sharply over deepening concern over an expansive slowdown of the Chinese economy.

Aug. 22

— Thousands of rain-soaked migrants trying to get to a European Union country rush past Macedonian riot police who were attempting to block their entry. They later get transported to the border with Serbia while Hungary builds a fence to keep them out.

Aug. 23

— Islamic State militants destroy a temple at ancient ruins of Palmyra in Syria, realizing the worst fears of archaeologists had for the fate of the 2,000-year-old Roman-era city after the extremists seized it and beheaded a local scholar.

Aug.24

— Canadian police say the hacking of the marital cheating site Ashley Madison has triggered extortion crimes and led to two unconfirmed reports of suicide.

Aug. 25

— French authorities say the alleged gunman in last week's thwarted assault on a Paris-bound train watched a radical Islamist video moments before the attack in which he was overpowered by several passengers, including three Americans.

Aug.26

— A reporter and a cameraman are shot to death in the U.S. during a live television interview by a disgruntled former colleague who records himself carrying out the killings and posts the video on social media. He later shoots himself and dies.

Aug. 27

—An abandoned truck is found with 71 decomposing bodies of migrants piled inside on the main highway connecting Austria to the Hungarian capital of Budapest, the latest tragedy in a year that has seen tens of thousands of people risking all to seek a better life or refuge in wealthy European countries.

Aug. 28

— The U.N. Security Council warns South Sudan's president and rebel leader to immediately implement a new peace agreement or face an arms embargo and sanctions.

Aug. 29

— An Egyptian court sentences three journalists for Al-Jazeera English to three years in prison for broadcasting "false news," sparking an international outcry and underlining how authorities are trampling over free speech under general-turned politician Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.

Aug. 30

— The Italian energy company Eni announces it has discovered a "supergiant" natural gas field off Egypt, describing it as the "largest ever" found in the Mediterranean Sea.

Aug. 31

— The United Nations says that a satellite image confirms that the main building of the ancient Temple of Bel in the Syrian town of Palmyra under the control of the Islamic State group has been destroyed.