2004 events in history

Jan 1 In a vote of confidence, General Pervez Musharraf wins 658 out of 1,170 votes in the Electoral College of Pakistan, and according to Article 41(8) of the Constitution of Pakistan, is "deemed to be elected" to the office of President until October 2007
Jan 2 Stardust successfully flies past Comet Wild 2, collecting samples that are returned to Earth
Jan 3 Flash Airlines Flight 604 crashes into the Red Sea, resulting in 148 deaths, making it the deadliest aviation accident in Egyptian history
Jan 4 Spirit, a NASA Mars rover, lands successfully on Mars at 04:35 UTC
Jan 4 Mikheil Saakashvili is elected President of Georgia following the November 2003 Rose Revolution
Jan 8 The RMS Queen Mary 2, the largest passenger ship ever built, is christened by her namesake's granddaughter, Queen Elizabeth II
Jan 9 An inflatable boat carrying illegal Albanian emigrants stalls near the Karaburun Peninsula while on the way to Brindisi, Italy; exposure to the elements kills 28
Jan 12 The world's largest ocean liner, RMS Queen Mary 2, makes its maiden voyage
Jan 14 The national flag of The Republic of Georgia, the so-called "five cross flag", is restored to official use after a hiatus of some 500 years
Jan 21 NASA's MER-A (the Mars Rover Spirit) ceases communication with mission control. The problem lies in the management of its flash memory and is fixed remotely from Earth on February 6
Jan 25 Opportunity rover (MER-B) lands on surface of Mars
Jan 26 President Hamid Karzai signs the new constitution of Afghanistan
Jan 26 A whale explodes in the town of Tainan, Taiwan. A build-up of gas in the decomposing sperm whale is suspected of causing the explosion
Feb 1 251 people are trampled to death and 244 injured in a stampede at the Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia
Feb 1 Janet Jackson's breast is exposed during the half-time show of Super Bowl XXXVIII, resulting in US broadcasters adopting a stronger adherence to Federal Communications Commission censorship guidelines
Feb 2 Swiss tennis player Roger Federer becomes the No. 1 ranked men's singles player, a position he will hold for a record 237 weeks
Feb 4 Facebook, a mainstream online social networking site, is founded by Mark Zuckerberg
Feb 5 Rebels from the Revolutionary Artibonite Resistance Front capture the city of Gonaïves, starting the 2004 Haiti rebellion
Feb 12 The city of San Francisco, California begins issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in response to a directive from Mayor Gavin Newsom
Feb 13 The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics announces the discovery of the universe's largest known diamond, white dwarf star BPM 37093. Astronomers named this star "Lucy" after The Beatles' song "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds"
Feb 14 In a suburb of Moscow, Russia, the roof of the Transvaal water park collapses, killing more than 25 people, and wounding more than 100 others
Feb 18 Up to 295 people, including nearly 200 rescue workers, die near Neyshabur in Iran when a runaway freight train carrying sulfur, petrol and fertilizer catches fire and explodes
Feb 27 The initial version of the John Jay Report, with details about the Catholic sexual abuse scandal in the United States, is released
Feb 27 A bombing of a Superferry by Abu Sayyaf in the Philippines' worst terrorist attack kills 116
Feb 28 Over one million Taiwanese participating in the 228 Hand-in-Hand Rally form a 500-kilometre (310 mi) long human chain to commemorate the 228 Incident in 1947
Feb 29 Jean-Bertrand Aristide is removed as President of Haiti following a coup
Mar 1 Mohammed Bahr al-Uloum becomes President of Iraq
Mar 2 War in Iraq: Al-Qaeda carries out the Ashoura Massacre in Iraq, killing 170 and wounding over 500
Mar 8 A new constitution is signed by Iraq's Governing Council
Mar 11 Madrid train bombings: Simultaneous explosions on rush hour trains in Madrid, Spain, kill 191 people
Mar 12 The President of South Korea, Roh Moo-hyun, is impeached by its National Assembly: the first such impeachment in the nation's history
Mar 17 Unrest in Kosovo: More than 22 are killed and 200 wounded. Thirty-five Serbian Orthodox shrines in Kosovo and two mosques in Belgrade and Niš are destroyed
Mar 19 3-19 Shooting Incident: Taiwanese president Chen Shui-bian is shot just before the country's presidential election on March 20
Mar 19 Konginkangas bus disaster: A semi-trailer truck and a bus crash head-on in Äänekoski, Finland. A total of 24 people are killed and 13 injured
Mar 19 A Swedish DC-3 shot down by a Russian MiG-15 in 1952 over the Baltic Sea is finally recovered after years of work. The remains of the three crewmen are left in place, pending further investigations
Mar 22 Ahmed Yassin, co-founder and leader of the Palestinian Sunni Islamist group Hamas, two bodyguards, and nine civilian bystanders are killed in the Gaza Strip when hit by Israeli Air Force AH-64 Apache fired Hellfire missiles
Mar 27 HMS Scylla, a decommissioned Leander class frigate, is sunk as an artificial reef off Cornwall, the first of its kind in Europe
Mar 29 Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia join NATO as full members
Mar 29 The Republic of Ireland becomes the first country in the world to ban smoking in all work places, including bars and restaurants
Mar 31 Iraq War in Anbar Province: In Fallujah, Iraq, four American private military contractors working for Blackwater USA, are killed after being ambushed
Apr 1 Google announces Gmail to the public
Apr 2 Islamist terrorists involved in the 11 March 2004 Madrid attacks attempt to bomb the Spanish high-speed train AVE near Madrid; the attack is thwarted
Apr 3 Islamic terrorists involved in the 11 March 2004 Madrid attacks are trapped by the police in their apartment and kill themselves
Apr 6 Rolandas Paksas becomes the first president of Lithuania to be peacefully removed from office by impeachment
Apr 8 Darfur conflict: The Humanitarian Ceasefire Agreement is signed by the Sudanese government and two rebel groups
Apr 21 Five suicide car bombers target police stations in and around Basra, killing 74 people and wounding 160
Apr 22 Two fuel trains collide in Ryongchon, North Korea, killing up to 150 people
Apr 24 The United States lifts economic sanctions imposed on Libya 18 years previously, as a reward for its cooperation in eliminating weapons of mass destruction
Apr 29 Oldsmobile builds its final car ending 107 years of production
Apr 29 Dick Cheney and George W. Bush testify before the 9/11 Commission in a closed, unrecorded hearing in the Oval Office