June 2006

Updated August 5, 2020 | Infoplease Staff


  • UN Declaration Calls for More Action on AIDS (June 2): General Assembly urges countries to triple annual spending to $23 billion a year by 2010 for AIDS and HIV prevention, education, and research.
  • Seventeen Canadians Are Arrested on Terrorism Charges (June 3): Ontario police arrest 12 adult men and five youths in Canada's largest counterterrorism operation. The charges against the suspects include attempting to build bombs, planning a series of bomb attacks, and receiving terrorist training.
  • Islamists Take Control of Mogadishu (June 5): Militants linked to al-Qaeda defeat the warlords that have controlled the capital of Somalia for the past 15 years. Their triumph is seen as a blow to the United States, which had reportedly covertly backed the warlords.
  • Iran Offered Incentives to Give Up Nuclear Activities (June 6): Javier Solana, the European Union's foreign policy chief, presents Iran a proposal from the United States, Russia, China, France, Britain, and Germany that would offer the country new planes for its civilian fleet and light-water reactors if it stops uranium enrichment and reprocessing.
  • Iraq Announces Prisoner Release Program (June 6): Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki says the government will release about 2,500 prisoners who have not been involved in the insurgency. He also says the government plans to reintegrate into society former Baathists—members of Saddam Hussein's party.
  • Prominent Militant Is Killed in Iraq (June 8): Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq and the most-wanted terrorist in Iraq, dies in an attack north of Baghdad.
  • Iraqi Parliament Approves Important Ministers (June 8): Gen. Abdul Qadr Mohammed Jassim is appointed minister of defense, Jawad Khadim Bolani becomes minister of interior and head of the police, and Shirwan al-Waili is approved as minister of national security.
  • Hamas Ends Cease-fire with Israel (June 10): In response to an Israeli shelling of a Gaza beach that killed eight civilians, Hamas fires Qassam rockets into Israeli territory, ending the 16-month truce with Israel.
  • Three Detainees Commit Suicide at Guantánamo (June 10): The victims, two Saudi and one Yemeni, hang themselves in their cells. They are the first suicides at the prison camp since it opened in 2002.
  • Bush Makes Surprise Visit to Iraq (June 13): Bush meets with the Iraqi prime minister and 17 cabinet members and promises that “America will keep its commitment” to the country.
  • Pentagon Releases Study on Interrogations (June 16): Report finds that techniques used by some Special Operations troops on Iraqi detainees in early 2004 were unauthorized and abusive, but not deliberately so. “Inadequate policy guidance” is blamed.
  • U.S. Army Charges Three U.S. Soldiers With Murder (June 19): They are accused of murdering three Iraqi detainees and threatening to kill another soldier if he talked to investigators about the case.
  • Bodies of U.S. Soldiers Found in Iraq (June 20): The two soldiers, who were captured by insurgents in an ambush the previous week, are said to have been tortured, killed, and mutilated beyond recognition.
  • Hussein Defense Lawyer Is Killed (June 21): A senior member of Hussein's defense team, Khamis al-Obeidi, is pulled from bed by gunmen, abducted, beaten, and shot. He is the tenth person connected with the trial to be killed.
  • Red Cross Admits Israeli and Palestinian Groups (June 22): The International Conference of the Red Cross and Red Crescent approves a culturally neutral third symbol, the Red Crystal, which may be displayed alone or with other symbols. This enables the admission of Israel’s Magen David Adom (Red Star of David) society. The Palestinian Red Crescent’s admission is approved at the same time.
  • Palestinian Militants Kidnap Israeli Soldier (June 25): Palestinian militants tunnel out of Gaza and into Israel, kill two Israeli soldiers, and kidnap a third, Cpl. Gilad Shalit. Palestinian president Abbas condemns the attack. (June 26): The militants demand that all jailed Palestinian women and children be released in return for information about Shalit. Olmert rejects the demand and Israel masses tanks and 3,000 troops at the Gaza border. (June 27): Israeli troops move into Gaza, disabling its only power plant and destroying three bridges. (June 29): Israeli troops seize Hamas political leaders in the West Bank, including a third of the Palestinian cabinet and 23 legislators.
  • Hamas and Fatah Complete Draft of an Agreement (June 27): Heading off a national referendum, the rival Palestinian movements agree on a plan calling for a Palestinian state alongside Israel and call on militants to limit attacks to areas captured by Israel in 1967. (June 28): Israeli analysts claim that, due to new language inserted by Hamas, the plan not only fails to recognize Israel's right to exist, but outright rejects the two-state solution being pursued.


  • Senate Defeats Ban on Same-Sex Marriage (June 7): Votes, 49–48, to reject a proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage.
  • DeLay Leaves Congress (June 8): On his last day in office, former House majority leader Tom DeLay defends his record, his reputation, and his intense partisanship.
  • Senate Votes to Retain Estate Tax (June 8): With a vote of 41–57, Republican lawmakers fall short of their attempt to repeal the tax on large inheritances. (June 22): In a compromise measure, the House votes, 269–156, to abolish the estate tax for all but the nation's very wealthiest families.
  • Violent Crime Increases in the U.S. (June 12): Report by the Federal Bureau of Investigation indicates violent crime rose by 2.5% in 2005. It was the first increase in four years.
  • U.S. Senator Enters the Record Books (June 12): West Virginia Republican Robert Byrd becomes the longest-serving senator in history, having been in office 17,327 days and elected eight times.
  • Special Prosecutor Will Not Charge Rove (June 13): Lewis “Scooter” Libby is now the only White House official still facing charges in the CIA leak case.
  • Congress Rejects Iraq Timetable (June 16): By a 256–153 margin, House approves resolution rejecting “arbitrary” deadlines and promising “completion of the mission” in Iraq. (June 22): The Senate rejects two proposals to begin pulling troops out of Iraq. A call for all troops to be withdrawn within a year fails, 86–13; a call for troop withdrawals to begin by the end of the year is rejected, 60–39.
  • Former White House Aide Convicted (June 20): David H. Safavian is convicted on four counts of lying and obstruction of justice in connection with Jack Abramoff.
  • Paper Reports That Government Has Been Analyzing Financial Records (June 22): The New York Times reports that counterterrorism officials have been examining records from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (aka Swift) using broad subpoenas, rather than individual court-approved warrants, and questions whether the program is legal under the 1978 Right to Financial Privacy Act.
  • Flag Amendment Defeated (June 28): Sixty-six senators vote for a Constitutional amendment giving Congress the power to prohibit flag desecration, with 34 opposed; 67 votes had been needed.
  • Supreme Court Rejects President's Guantánamo Policy (June 29): In a 5–3 decision, justices rule in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld that military tribunals cannot be set up to try prisoners in the absence of Congressional authorization and that the prisoners are entitled to fair trials under the Geneva Conventions. Decision seen as a stunning blow to the Bush administration.


  • FDA Approves Vaccine for Cervical Cancer (June 8): The Food and Drug Administration approves Gardasil, a vaccine that prevents cervical cancer, which is caused by the human papillomavirus. At $360 a course, Gardasil is one of the most expensive vaccines.
  • Bill Gates to Step Aside (June 15): Microsoft's chairman announces that he will remove himself from day-to-day operations in two years, concentrating instead on his philanthropic foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
  • Portrait Sale Sets Record (June 18): Gustav Klimt's 1907 “Adele Bloch-Bauer I” is purchased by Ronald Lauder for his Neue Gallery for a reported $135 million, the most ever paid for a single painting.
  • Episcopal Church Names Woman as Leader (June 18): Katharine Jefferts Schori will become the presiding bishop in November and will be the first woman to lead a church in the Anglican Communion. (June 21): In an attempt at compromise with the Anglican Communion, the Episcopal Church calls upon its members to no longer elect openly gay bishops, but stops short of an outright ban.
  • Buffett Makes Large Gift to Foundations (June 24): Warren Buffett announces that he will donate 85% of his $44 billion fortune to five philanthropic organizations, with about $31 billion going to the Gates Foundation. He will join the foundation as a trustee.
  • Mid-Atlantic Region Endures Worst Flooding in Decades (June 28): After days of drenching rain, rivers overflow their banks from Virginia to central New York. About 200,000 residents are evacuated from the Wilkes-Barre, Pa., area, and thousands more elsewhere in the region.

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