On this day: Mad cow disease | Napoleon

A protester in Beijing's Tiananmen Square models a statue of liberty. On this day in 1989, the regime ordered a crackdown. Picture: Getty
A protester in Beijing's Tiananmen Square models a statue of liberty. On this day in 1989, the regime ordered a crackdown. Picture: Getty
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Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 30 May

30 May

1808: Napoleon Bonaparte annexed Tuscany.

1842: John Francis fired a pistol at Queen Victoria as she was driving down Constitution Hill, London, with Prince Albert. Francis was seized by a policeman and was convicted of high treason. The death sentence was commuted to transportation for life.

1911: The Indianapolis 500 car race of 200 laps was inaugurated in the US. It was won by Ray Harroun at an average 74.59mph.

1946: The Minister of Food for the post-war Labour government, John Strachey, told the Commons that bread would be rationed, with the greatest allowance going to manual workers in heavy industry.

1959: The first full-sized experimental hovercraft, built by Saunders-Roe, was launched at Cowes on the Isle of Wight.

1961: Rafael Trujillo, dictator of the Dominican Republic, was assassinated.

1967: Biafra, formerly the province of Eastern Nigeria, declared itself an independent republic. Ravaged by a war with Nigeria and famine, it was re-incorporated into Nigeria in 1970.

1969: British Trans-Arctic Expedition completed first surface crossing of the continent, covering 3,600 miles in 464 days.

1971: Mariner 9 was launched from Cape Kennedy for a Mars mission.

1982: Spain became 16th member of Nato.

1984: The 45-month Gulf war heated up as Iraq reported new attacks on naval targets near Iran’s Kharg Island oil port.

1987: Mob of militant “low-caste” villagers massacred at least 42 members of upper-caste landlord families in India’s impoverished eastern state of Bihar.

1989: Military source said Chinese troops told to prepare for lengthy struggle in government crackdown on student protests.

1990: France banned beef exports from Britain in “mad cow disease” scare.

1992: The United Nations imposed sanctions on warring states in the former Yugoslavia.

1998: A magnitude 6.6 earthquake hit northern Afghanistan, killing up to 5,000.

2003: At least 70 people associated with the National League for Democracy were killed by government-sponsored mobs in Burma. Aung San Suu Kyi fled the scene, but was later arrested.

2010: Chief Secretary to the Treasury David Laws resigned after it was revealed he broke Commons rules by claiming £40,000 in rent on a flat owned by his male partner.


Harry Enfield, writer, actor and comedian, 52; Tim Burgess, rock singer (The Charlatans), 45; Stephen Duffy, pop singer (ex-Duran Duran), 53; Peter Ellis, actor, 77; Jennifer Ellison, actress, model and singer, 30; Leigh Francis (aka Avid Merrion), comedy performer, 39; Steven Gerrard, footballer, 33; Richard Hannon, racehorse trainer, 68; David Shukman, broadcaster, 54; Tim Waterstone, Scottish bookseller, 74; Bob Willis MBE, cricketer and broadcaster, 64.


Births: 1672 Peter the Great, Tsar of Russia; 1846 Peter Carl Fabergé, jeweller; 1896 Howard Hawks, director; 1909 Benny Goodman, clarinettist and band leader.

Deaths: 1431 Joan of Arc, French martyr (burned at the stake); 1593 Christopher Marlowe, playwright (killed in brawl at 29); 1744 Alexander Pope, poet; 1778 Voltaire, philosopher; 1847 Thomas Chalmers, first Moderator of Free Church of Scotland; 1912 Wilbur Wright, who made first controlled flight in 1903.