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Deposed Romanian president Nicolae Ceausescu 1989: Romania's 'first couple' executed

Deposed Romanian president Nicolae Ceausescu and his wife Elena are shot after being found guilty of crimes against the state.

House in Darwin 1974: Cyclone Tracy leaves Darwin devastated
The Australian city of Darwin is wrecked by a powerful cyclone that leaves thousands of people homeless.

Mikhail Gorbachev 1991: Gorbachev resigns as Soviet Union breaks up
Mikhail Gorbachev, leader of the Soviet Union for almost seven years, steps down from office.

The Queen addresses the nation in her first Christmas broadcast 1952: Queen makes first Christmas speech
British and Commonwealth listeners hear the Queen's first Christmas broadcast since her accession to the throne.

Charlie Chaplin in The Kid, 1921 1977: Silent film legend Chaplin dies
Charlie Chaplin, the comic genius of silent films, dies at his home in Switzerland at the age of 88.

2003: Mars space probe disappears
Scientists fail to make contact with British-built Mars probe Beagle 2, which should have landed on the Red Planet earlier today.
 Around this Day
Top Story 1972: Survivors found 10 weeks after plane crash
Top Story 1972: Earthquake wreaks devastation in Nicaragua
Top Story 1962: Bay of Pigs prisoners fly to freedom
Top Story 2004: Thousands die in Asian tsunami
Top Story 1965: Sea Gem oil rig collapses
Top Story 1980: Green light for breakfast television
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