1986 is a common year starting on Wednesday.
1983 1984 1985 - 1986 - 1987 1988 1989
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- Wednesday, January 1, 1986 - Spain and Portugal enter the European Community
- Wednesday, January 1, 1986 - Aruba gains increased autonomy from the Netherlands and is separated from the Netherlands Antilles.
- Thursday, January 9, 1986 - After losing a patent battle with Polaroid, Kodak leaves the instant camera business.
- Sunday, January 12, 1986 - Space shuttle Columbia takes-off with the first Hispanic-American astronaut, Dr. Franklin R. Chang-Diaz.
- Monday, January 20, 1986 - The United Kingdom and France announce plans to construct the Channel Tunnel.
- Monday, January 20, 1986 - The first federal holiday honoring Martin Luther King Jr.
- Friday, January 24, 1986 - Voyager 2 space probe makes first encounter with Uranus
- Tuesday, January 28, 1986 - Space Shuttle Challenger disaster
- Wednesday, January 29, 1986 - Yoweri Kaguta Museveni became President of the Republic of Uganda after leading a successful five-year liberation struggle.
- Friday, February 7, 1986 - 28 years of one-family rule end in Haiti, when President Jean-Claude Duvalier flees the Caribbean nation.
- Sunday, February 9, 1986 - Mohinder Amarnath becomes the first batsman dismissed handled the ball in one-day international cricket.
- Tuesday, February 11, 1986 - Human Rights activist Anatoly Scharansky is released by USSR, leaves the country.
- Sunday, February 16, 1986 - The Soviet liner Mikhail Lermontov runs aground in the Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand
- Wednesday, February 19, 1986 - The Soviet Union launches the Mir space station
- Wednesday, February 19, 1986 - After waiting 37 years, the United States Senate approves a treaty outlawing genocide
- Tuesday, February 25, 1986 - EDSA Revolution: President Ferdinand Marcos of the Philippines flees the nation after 20 years of rule; Corazon Aquino becomes the first Filipino woman president
- Thursday, February 27, 1986 - The United States Senate allows its debates to be televised on a trial basis
- Friday, February 28, 1986 - Swedish prime minister Olof Palme is shot dead on his way home from the cinema, his wife the only witness.
- February 28 - Corazon Aquino sworn in as the President of the Philippines
- Saturday, March 8, 1986 - Japanese spacecraft Suisei flies by Halley's Comet, studying its UV hydrogen corona and solar wind.
- Sunday, March 9, 1986 - United States Navy divers find the largely intact but heavily-damaged crew compartment of the Space Shuttle Challenger. The bodies of all seven astronauts were still inside.
- Monday, March 31, 1986 - A fire devestates Hampton Court Palace in Surrey, England.
- Thursday, April 3, 1986 - IBM unveils the PC Convertible, IBM's first laptop computer
- Sunday, April 5, 1986 - In the terroristic La Belle discotheque bombing the West-Berlin discotheque, a known hangout for U.S. soldiers, was bombed, killing 3 and injuring 230 people. Libya is held responsible.
- April 17 - British journalist John McCarthy kidnapped in Beirut (released in August 1991) - three others are found dead, Revolutionary Cells claims responsibility in retaliation for the US bombing of Libya
- Saturday, April 26, 1986 - In the Ukraine, one of the reactors at the Chornobyl (Chernobyl) nuclear plant explodes creating the worlds worst nuclear disaster. 31 are killed directly by the incident, many thousands more were exposed to significant amounts of radioactive material, vast territories in Ukraine and Belarus rendered uninhabitable.
- Sunday, April 27, 1986 - Captain Midnight (John R. MacDougall) hijacks HBO's satellite and transmits his own message to HBO viewers.
- Friday, May 2, 1986 - The 1986 World Exposition in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada opens.
- Sunday, May 25, 1986 - "Hands Across America"
- Monday, May 26, 1986 - The European Community adopts the European flag.
- Wednesday, June 4, 1986 - Jonathan Pollard pleads guilty to espionage for selling top secret United States military intelligence to Israel.
- Sunday, June 8, 1986 - Former United Nations Secretary-General Kurt Waldheim is elected president of Austria.
- Monday, June 9, 1986 - The Rogers Commission releases its report on the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster
- June 22 - Pirate radio Euro Weekend begins to broadcast
- Saturday, July 5, 1986 - The Statue of Liberty is reopened to the public after an extensive refurbishing
- Wednesday, July 23, 1986 - In London, Prince Andrew, Duke of York marries Sarah Ferguson at Westminster Abbey.
- July 30 - Estate agent Suzy Lamplugh vanishes after a meeting in London
- Apple Lisa discontinued by Apple.
- Wednesday, August 20, 1986 - In Edmond, Oklahoma, US Postal employee Patrick Henry Sherrill guns down 14 of his co-workers and then commits suicide.
- Thursday, August 21, 1986 - The Lake Nyos Tragedy occurs, killing nearly 2000 people.
- Monday, September 1, 1986 - The Soviet sea-liner Admiral Nakhimov collides with the bulk carrier Petr Vasev and sinks almost immediately, killing 448.
- Friday, September 5, 1986 - Pan Am Flight 73 with 358 people on board is hijacked at Karachi International Airport
- Saturday, September 6, 1986 - In Istanbul, two Arab terrorists from Abu Nidal's terror organization kill 22 and wound six inside the Neve Shalom synagogue during Sabbath services
- Sunday, September 7, 1986 - Desmond Tutu becomes the first black to lead the Anglican Church in South Africa.
- Thursday, October 9, 1986 - United States District Court Judge Harry E. Claiborne becomes the fifth federal official to be removed from office through impeachment
- Friday, October 10, 1986 - An earthquake measuring 7.5 on the Richter Scale strikes San Salvador, El Salvador, killing an estimated 1,500 people
- Saturday, October 11, 1986 - Cold War: US President Ronald Wilson Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev meet in [[Reykjav�k]], Iceland, in an effort to continue discussions about scaling back their intermediate missile arsenals in Europe (the talks break down in failure).
- Sunday, October 26, 1986 - Bus deregulation in the United Kingdom, except Greater London and Northern Ireland.
- Tuesday, October 28, 1986 - The centennial of the Statue of Liberty's dedication is celebrated in New York Harbor.
- Tuesday, October 28, 1986 - Jeremy Bamber is found guilty of the murder of his parents, sister and twin nephews and is given five life sentences.
- Monday, November 3, 1986 - Iran-Contra Affair: The Lebanese magazine Ash-Shiraa reports that the United States has been selling weapons to Iran in secret in order to secure the release of seven American hostages held by pro-Iranian groups in Lebanon.
- Tuesday, November 11, 1986 - Sperry Rand and Burroughs merge to form Unisys, becoming the second largest computer company
- Friday, November 21, 1986 - Iran-Contra Affair: National Security Council member Oliver North and his secretary start to shred documents implicating them in the sale of weapons to Iran and channeling the proceeds to help fund the Contras rebels in Nicaragua.
- Tuesday, November 25, 1986 - Iran Contra Affair: US Attorney General Edwin Meese announces that profits from covert weapons sales to Iran were illegally diverted to the anti-communist Contra rebels in Nicaragua.
- Wednesday, November 26, 1986 - Iran-Contra scandal: US President Ronald Wilson Reagan announces that as of Monday, December 1 former Senator John Tower, former Secretary of State Edmund Muskie, and former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft will be serving as members of the Special Review Board looking into the scandal (they became known as the Tower Commission).
- December 14-23 - Voyager plane with Richard G. Rutan and Jeana Yeager flies around the world in 9 days, 3 minutes and 44 seconds
- December 19 - Soviet dissident Andrei Sakharov is permitted to return to Moscow after years of internal exile
- Tuesday, December 23, 1986 - Voyager, an experimental aircraft designed by Burt Rutan and piloted by Dick Rutan and Jeana Yeager, completes the first nonstop circumnavigation of the earth by air without refueling.
- Wednesday, December 31, 1986 - A fire at the Dupont Plaza Hotel in San Juan, Puerto Rico, kills 97 and injures 140.
- Rajendra Sethia flees from England to India owing �170 million
- Commonly considered the start date of the golden age of old school rap
Year in topic
- 1986 in film
- Friday, February 7, 1986 - F/X
- Friday, May 16, 1986 - Top Gun starring Tom Cruise
- Friday, May 23, 1986 - Cobra starring Sylvester Stallone
- Friday, June 6, 1986 - Raw Deal starring Arnold Schwarzenegger
- Friday, July 18, 1986 - Aliens starring Sigourney Weaver
- Friday, October 17, 1986 - The Color of Money starring Paul Newman and Tom Cruise
- Wednesday, November 26, 1986 - Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home
- Children of a Lesser God
- Hannah and Her Sisters
- Ferris Bueller's Day Off
- Little Shop of Horrors
- 1986 in literature
- 1986 in music
- 1986 in sports
- 1986 in television
- January 1986 - A Vicks Formula 44 ad premieres, starring Peter Bergman from All My Children, in which he told the viewing audience "I'm not a doctor, but I play one on TV."
- Thursday, May 22, 1986 - Cher calls David Letterman an "asshole" on the air during a taping of Late Night with David Letterman.
- Friday, July 18, 1986 - A tornado is broadcast live on KARE TV in Minnesota when the station's helicopter pilot makes a chance encounter.
- Thursday, October 9, 1986 - The FOX Broadcasting Company becomes the United States' fourth television network with a broadcast of "The Late Show Starring Joan Rivers".
- Monday, October 27, 1986 - Australian soap opera Neighbours begins broadcast on BBC1
- Saturday, February 1, 1986 - Johan Vonlanthen, Swiss soccer player
- Wednesday, February 19, 1986 - Maria Mena, Norwegian pop star
- Wednesday, February 19, 1986 - Dan Whelan, musician
- Friday, February 21, 1986 - Charlotte Church, Welsh singer
- Saturday, March 1, 1986 - Jonathan Spector, soccer player
- Sunday, March 9, 1986 - Brittany Snow, actress
- Friday, March 14, 1986 - Jamie Bell, actor
- Friday, June 13, 1986 - The Olsen twins, actresses and entrepreneurs
- Tuesday, June 24, 1986 - Solange Knowles, actress, singer
- Wednesday, July 2, 1986 - Lindsay Lohan, actress
- Friday, July 4, 1986 - Shane Kippel, Canadian actor
- Wednesday, November 5, 1986 - BoA, Korean singer
- Monday, November 3, 1986 - Jasmine Trias, American Idol singer
- Tuesday, November 25, 1986 - Amber Hagerman, kidnapping, murder victim (d. 1996)
- Wednesday, January 1, 1986 - Alfredo Binda, Italian cyclist
- Tuesday, January 14, 1986 - Donna Reed, actress
- Friday, January 24, 1986 - L. Ron Hubbard, science fiction writer, founder of Scientology
- Friday, January 24, 1986 - Gordon MacRae, actor, singer
- Friday, January 24, 1986 - Vincente Minnelli, director
- Monday, January 27, 1986 - Lilli Palmer, actress
- Tuesday, January 28, 1986 - Crew of Space Shuttle Challenger: Francis R. Scobee, Michael J. Smith, Judith Resnik, Ellison Onizuka, Ronald McNair, Greg Jarvis, Christa McAuliffe.
- Tuesday, February 11, 1986 - Frank Herbert, science fiction author.
- Thursday, February 27, 1986 - Jacques Plante, ice hockey star
- Friday, February 28, 1986 - Olof Palme, Swedish prime minister
- Thursday, March 6, 1986 - Georgia O'Keeffe, artist
- Monday, March 10, 1986 - Ray Milland, British actor
- Sunday, March 30, 1986 - James Cagney, actor
- Thursday, April 3, 1986 - Richard Manuel, musician ("The Band")
- Monday, April 14, 1986 - Simone de Beauvoir, feminist philosopher
- Saturday, April 26, 1986 - Broderick Crawford, actor
- Saturday, April 26, 1986 - Dechko Uzunov, painter (b. 1899)
- Friday, May 9, 1986 - Tenzing Norgay, mountaineer
- Monday, May 12, 1986 - Elisabeth Bergner, actress
- Thursday, May 15, 1986 - Theodore H. White, writer
- Friday, May 23, 1986 - Sterling Hayden
- Sunday, May 25, 1986 - Chester Bowles, politician
- Friday, June 13, 1986 - Benny Goodman, jazz musician (b. 1909)
- Saturday, June 14, 1986 - Jorge Luis Borges, Argentine writer
- Friday, July 4, 1986 - Oscar Zariski, mathematician (b. 1899)
- Tuesday, July 8, 1986 - Hyman Rickover, American admiral
- Tuesday, July 8, 1986 - Skeeter Webb, Professional Baseball Player (b. 1909)
- Wednesday, August 20, 1986 - Milton Acorn, Canadian poet, writer, and playwright
- Sunday, August 31, 1986 - Urho Kekkonen, president of Finland 1956-1981 (b. 1900)
- Sunday, August 31, 1986 - Henry Moore, sculptor
- Thursday, September 4, 1986 - Hank Greenberg, Baseball Hall of Famer (b. 1911)
- Saturday, September 27, 1986 - Cliff Burton, Metallica bassist
- Sunday, October 5, 1986 - James H. Wilkinson, mathematician
- Saturday, October 25, 1986 - Forrest Tucker, American actor
- Sunday, October 26, 1986 - Jackson Scholz, American sprinter
- Saturday, November 8, 1986 – Artur London, Czech statesman
- Friday, November 21, 1986 – Dar Robinson, film stuntman
- Saturday, November 22, 1986 - Scatman Crothers, actor, musician
- Saturday, November 29, 1986 - Cary Grant, actor
- Sunday, December 28, 1986 - Andrei Tarkovsky, Russian movie director
- Monday, December 29, 1986 - Harold Macmillan, British statesman
- Physics - Ernst Ruska, Gerd Binnig, Heinrich Rohrer
- Chemistry - Dudley R Herschbach, Yuan T Lee, John C Polanyi
- Medicine - Stanley Cohen, Rita Levi-Montalcini
- Literature - Wole Soyinka
- Peace - Elie Wiesel
- Economics - James Buchanan Jraf:1986
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