28 December 2011
Last updated at 01:54
Egypt's revolution began on 25 January, the Day of Revolt, when tens of thousands of marchers occupied Cairo's Tahrir Square to protest against President Hosni Mubarak and his government. Simultaneous protests were held in Ismailiya, Alexandria and Suez. In the following days the demonstrations became more violent. Police fired rubber bullets and used water cannon to repel protesters. A curfew was enforced, the army was deployed and the internet was shut down by the government.
After thousands of carnival costumes were destroyed in a February fire, some of the top samba schools in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, proved that the party must go on.
The death of Libya's ousted leader Col Muammar Gaddafi was greeted with jubilation by many Libyans, who felt the country could not move on while he remained at large. The Libyan uprising began in February, but it took more than six months for the capital, Tripoli, to be taken. Here a Libyan rebel fighter mans a checkpoint in the stronghold oil town of Ras Lanuf.
The tsunami that followed an 8.9-magnitude earthquake wreaked havoc along a huge stretch of Japan's north-east coast, sweeping far inland and devastating a number of towns, villages and the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
There was a palpable sense of shock on the streets of Ivory Coast's main city, Abidjan, following the transfer of ousted President Laurent Gbagbo to The Hague to face war crimes charges. Supporters of the former president say they are outraged that he has been been flown out of his country. Laurent Gbagbo was overthrown in an armed civil conflict after refusing to accept defeat in the presidential election last year.
A new crew for the International Space Station blasted off from the Baikonur space port in Kazakhstan aboard a Russian Soyuz rocket. Their spacecraft was emblazoned with the name and portrait of the USSR's Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space. Gagarin's historic journey took place 50 years ago.
Prince William and Kate Middleton kissed twice on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after their wedding service in Westminster Abbey. They were cheered by 500,000 well-wishers who gathered outside the palace as RAF planes flew past in honour of the new royal couple.
US President Barack Obama followed the raid in which Osama Bin Laden was killed in real time, according to White House counter-terrorism adviser John Brennan. Speaking at a news conference, he said that "the minutes passed like days" as senior government officials watched events unfold.
Hundreds of Brazilian police and soldiers backed by helicopters and armoured vehicles swept through a crime-ridden Rio slum as part of a pacification plan ahead of the football World Cup in 2014. More than 100 marines and 160 elite police officers took part in the operation in the hillside Mangueira neighbourhood, without a shot being fired, a police spokesman said. Drug gangs which had been controlling the district had fled well in advance.
Pakistan is considering taxing Nato trucks and fuel tankers that pass through Pakistan on their way to Afghanistan millions of dollars in annual taxes. Suspected militants have repeatedly opened fire on the convoys, setting trucks alight.
Too few officers were sent on to London's streets during three nights of rioting in August, a Metropolitan Police report has said. There was serious disorder in 22 of the 32 boroughs overseen by the Met, and the geographical spread of the riots was unprecedented, it added.
Nato helicopters were called in to kill three Taliban militants to help end a five-hour attack by suicide bombers and gunmen on a hotel in the Afghan capital, Kabul. The attack on the Intercontinental Hotel, frequented by Westerners, killed six more militants, two police and 11 civilians.
Sixty-nine people were shot dead on the island of Utoeya, Norway, and eight others killed in a bomb attack in the capital, Oslo. A further 151 were also injured in the attacks on 22 July. One man, Anders Breivik, admitted the killings and remains in custody.
An international media frenzy erupted following a claim by hotel maid Nafissatou Diallo that the then IMF director Dominique Strauss-Kahn had sexually assaulted her at the Sofitel Hotel in New York City. Prosecutors told the New York County Court judge they were no longer convinced of his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The case was dropped and Mr Strauss-Kahn was free to leave the US.
The US marked 10 years since the attacks of 11 September 2001. Ceremonies were held in Washington, Pennsylvania and New York where the National Memorial was unveiled at the World Trade Center site.
The Greek parliament gave its final approval to a package of austerity measures. The approval came despite days of violent protests against its provisions, which include cutting public sector wages and raising taxes. Firefighters had to extinguish piles of debris set alight by protesters, and there were running battles with riot police in the streets of the capital, Athens.
More than 500 people lost their lives as a result of the worse floods in Thailand in 50 years. Three months of heavy monsoon rain left swathes of the country flooded, with northern and central areas worst hit.
Rescuers carry two-week-old baby girl Azra Karaduman from the rubble of a collapsed building in Ercis after a 5.6-magnitude earthquake struck eastern Turkey.