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Last Updated: Thursday, 18 December, 2003, 19:59 GMT
Global news challenge, part 1

Think you're a news buff? If so, it's time to test yourself on major events around the world from the past 12 months.

When you've got your result, why not e-mail the quiz to a friend to see how they measure up?

Good luck!

At the beginning of 2003, which country alarmed its neighbours by pulling out of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty and breaking its commitments not to spread nuclear technology?
A: Iran
B: North Korea
C: India
On 1 February seven astronauts died after the American space shuttle Columbia disintegrated as it reentered the Earth's atmosphere. What was special about Columbia?
A: It was the world's first reusable space vehicle. Before Columbia, rockets could only be used once
B: It was built with help from the Russians
C: It was the only shuttle to have completed 100 successful missions
On 18 March President Bush gave Saddam Hussein an ultimatum to leave Iraq within 48 hours or face war. His exact words were?
A: "The tyrant will soon be gone. The day of your liberation is near"
B: "You will not escape the long arm of American justice"
C: "Mr Saddam, your day of reckoning has come"
In April, European leaders meeting in Athens made history by signing a treaty allowing 10 new members to join the EU in 2004. How many prospective new citizens did European Commission President Romano Prodi welcome to the EU club?
A: 55 million
B: 60 million
C: 75 million
What now controversial phrase appeared on a banner behind President Bush when he declared an end to major combat operations in Iraq on 1 May?
A: "In God we trust"
B: "Mission accomplished"
C: "We come in peace"
"I was dumbfounded, heartbroken and outraged." Which prominent American expressed this sentiment in a revealing new memoir launched in June?
A: Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart - who was charged with criminal offences after an insider trading investigation
B: Madeleine Albright, who, in her autobiography Madam Secretary: A Memoir, wrestled with the problems that face women who aim for the top
C: Former First Lady Hillary Clinton who revealed her sorrow over her husband's infidelity with Monica Lewinsky
What in July signalled a major step towards peace between nuclear neighbours India and Pakistan?
A: The resumption of bus links between Lahore and Delhi
B: An agreement by the two heads of government to meet face-to-face
C: The resumption of trade links between the two countries
In August, Liberia's President Taylor agreed to go into exile in Nigeria, as part of moves aimed at ending more than a decade of civil war. What problem does he now face?
A: Bounty hunters eager for a $2m reward allegedly offered by the US Congress are trying to track him
B: The Nigerian Government wants him to find another home in another country
C: He has been unable to transfer his money and is reported to be living on $50 a month
In September, a British backpacker staged a daring escape from rebels holding a group of international tourists hostage in which country?
A: Colombia
B: Sri Lanka
C: Nepal
China sent its first man into space in October, making Yang Liwei a national hero. But the endeavour became embroiled in controversy. Why?
A: A senior Chinese official was fired for saying he didn't see what all the fuss was about because the Americans had done it years ago
B: Space officials were forced to register his image, name and signature in an attempt to stop companies using them to sell products
C: Mr Yang had to go into hiding for a month after Chinese citizens reacted in anger to his comment that he couldn't see the Great Wall of China from space
November saw a peaceful revolution in Georgia. Who did the country's President Eduard Shevardnadze lambast for "abandoning him"?
A: His own people
B: Moscow
C: Washington
In December, Robert Mugabe pulled Zimbabwe out of the Commonwealth. What work of fiction did he refer to in his description of the organisation?
A: George Orwell's novel, Animal Farm, in which some members are more equal than others
B: Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland, in which Alice reflects on being ordered around by mice and rabbits
C: Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace

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