What a year 2016 has been! From the shocking upset of Brexit to the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States, there have been plenty of world events that have made headlines. As we move into 2017, it’s essential to reflect on the most significant world events in 2016. From devastating natural disasters to historic elections, these events substantially impacted individual lives and the global community.
The Syrian refugee crisis continued to worsen throughout 2016. More than 11 million Syrians had been forced from their homes by December, and more than 4.8 million had become refugees. However, there were also moments of hope, such as signing the Paris Agreement and the Olympic Games in Rio.
The 10 Most Significant World Events in 2016
Colombia Strikes a Peace Deal
After 52 years of civil war, the government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) have reached a peace deal. The agreement, signed on November 24th, was narrowly rejected by Colombian citizens in a referendum held just two days later. However, the government and FARC agreed to modify the deal to address some of the concerns raised by voters.
On December 12th President Juan Manuel Santos announced that Congress had approved the revised agreement. The peace deal will end one of the longest-running civil wars in Latin America. It is hoped that it will also help reduce violence and improve economic conditions in Colombia. Some aspects of the agreement are still being negotiated, such as how FARC members will be reintegrated into society, but implementation is expected to begin in early 2017.
Brazil and South Korea Impeach Their Presidents
Brazil and South Korea impeached their presidents in 2016. Dilma Rousseff was impeached in Brazil for hiding budgetary deficits to make her reelection look better. South Korea’s president, Park Geun-Hye, was impeached after it was revealed that she worked with a cult leader and let him interfere with government business.
Eastern Aleppo Falls
The fall of eastern Aleppo in December 2016 was a watershed moment in the Syrian Civil War. After years of brutal fighting, the rebels who had controlled the city’s eastern half were finally forced to surrender. The victory was a significant milestone for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his allies, Russia and Iran. It also dealt a severe blow to the rebel movement, counting on eastern Aleppo as its last stronghold in Syria.
The Coup in Turkey Fails
On July 15, 2016, a military coup attempt took place in Turkey. The shot was organized by a faction within the Turkish Armed Forces that called themselves the “Peace at Home Council.” The attempted coup began at 10:00 p.m. local time with members of the military occupying critical positions in Istanbul and Ankara. However, by the morning hours of July 16, it became clear that the coup had failed, with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan returning to Istanbul and declaring that the coup plotters were “a minority within the military.” Two hundred forty-six people were killed and over 2,000 injured during the attempted coup.
Rodrigo Duterte Becomes President of the Philippines
Rodrigo Duterte was sworn in as the president of the Philippines on June 30, 2016, after winning the election on May 9. His presidency has been marked by controversial statements and actions, including his support for extrajudicial killings of suspected drug dealers and users. In addition to his domestic policies, Duterte has also been outspoken about his views on foreign policy, including his opposition to the U.S. military’s presence in the Philippines and his support for closer ties with China and Russia.
Ethiopia: ‘Several’ killed in Oromia festival stampede
Ethiopia suffered a tragedy in January 2016 when several people were killed in a stampede during a religious festival. The stampede occurred at the annual Irreecha Festival, which is held to celebrate the end of the rainy season. Tens of thousands of people had gathered at Bishoftu for the event, and the stampede began when some people fell into a ditch. At least 55 people were killed in the stampede, and more than 100 were injured. The Ethiopian government launched an investigation into the incident, but no conclusions were announced.
North Korea Conducts Missile and Nuclear Tests
Since the beginning of 2016, North Korea has continued to test missiles and nuclear weapons in defiance of United Nations Security Council resolutions. In February, North Korea launched a satellite into orbit, which many experts believe was a cover for testing ballistic missile technology.
In September, North Korea conducted its fifth nuclear test, claiming that it had successfully detonated a hydrogen bomb. The international community has responded to these tests with sanctions and condemnations, but they have failed to deter North Korea from continuing its nuclear program.
Britain Votes to Leave the European Union
The British people have voted to leave the European Union in a move that will have far-reaching consequences for both the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe. The referendum, which took place on June 23rd, saw 52% of voters choose to leave the 28-nation bloc, while 48% opted to stay.
British Prime Minister David Cameron, who had campaigned for Britain to remain in the EU, announced his resignation shortly after the results were announced. “I do not think it would be right for me to be the captain that steers our country to its next destination,” he said.
The vote will also have significant economic consequences. The pound plummeted against the dollar and the euro when the results were announced, and stock markets worldwide plunged.
The fire that destroyed Fort McMurray
A wildfire began in Fort McMurray, Alberta and quickly spread out of control in early May. The fire destroyed over 2,400 homes and buildings in the city, making it one of the most destructive wildfires. More than 80,000 people were evacuated as the fire continued to rage. In late July, the fire was finally declared to be under control.
Donald Trump Wins the U.S. Presidency
In a stunning turn of events, businessman and reality TV star Donald Trump has been elected the 45th president of the United States. Trump’s victory came as a surprise to many, given his controversial statements and lack of political experience. In his victory speech, Trump vowed to be a president for all Americans. “I pledge to every citizen of our land that I will be president for all Americans, which is important to me,” he said. ”
For those who have chosen not to support me in the past, of which there were a few people, I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together and unify our great country.” Trump’s election has sparked protests across the country, with many people concerned about the future of America under his leadership.