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1980 ( MCMLXXX) was a leap year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar, the 1980th year of the Common Era (CE) and (AD) designations, the 980th year of the Anno Domini 2nd millennium, the 80th year of the 20th century, and the 1st year of the 1980s decade.
January 4 - U.S. President Jimmy Carter proclaims a grain embargo against the USSR with the support of the European Commission. 
January 6 - Global Positioning System time epoch begins at 00:00 UTC.
January 7 - U.S. President Jimmy Carter authorizes legislation giving $1.5 billion in loans to bail out the Chrysler Corporation.
January 9 - In Saudi Arabia, 63 Islamist insurgents are beheaded for their part in the siege of the Great Mosque in Mecca in November, 1979. 
January 14 - Indira Gandhi returns to power as Prime Minister of India. 
January 21 - The London Gold Fixing hits its highest price ever of $843 per troy ounce ($2,249.50 in 2020 when adjusted for inflation). 
January 22 - Andrei Sakharov, Soviet scientist and human rights activist, is arrested in Moscow. 
January 26 - Israel and Egypt establish diplomatic relations. 
January 27 - Canadian Caper: Six United States diplomats, posing as Canadians, manage to escape from Tehran, Iran, as they board a flight to Zürich, Switzerland, on Swissair.
January 28 - The U.S. Coast Guard cutter USCGC capsizes after colliding with the oil tanker SS Blackthorn Capricorn and sinks, drowning 23 of its crew of 50.
January 29 - The Rubik's Cube makes its international debut at The British Toy and Hobby Fair, Earl's Court, London.  January 31 - Burning of the Spanish Embassy in Guatemala: The Spanish Embassy in Guatemala is invaded and set on fire, killing 36 people. In the United States, it is dubbed "Spain's own Tehran". 
March 4 - Robert Mugabe is elected Prime Minister of Zimbabwe. 
March 8 - The Soviet Union's first rock music festival starts.
March 14 - LOT Polish Airlines Flight 007 crashes during an emergency landing near Warsaw, Poland, killing a 14-man American boxing team and 73 others. 
March 18 - Fifty people are killed at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Russia, when a Vostok-2M rocket explodes on its launch pad during a fueling operation.
March 19 - 20 - The MV , the ship housing Mi Amigo pirate radio station Radio Caroline, sinks off the English coast (the station returns aboard a new ship in 1983).
March 21 - U.S. President Jimmy Carter announces that the United States will boycott the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow because of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. 
March 22 - The Georgia Guidestones are erected in Elbert County, Georgia, United States. 
March 26 - A mine lift cage at the Vaal Reefs gold mine in South Africa falls 1.9 kilometres (1.2 mi), killing 23 workers. 
March 27 - The Norwegian oil platform collapses in the North Sea, killing 123 of its crew of 212. Alexander L. Kielland 
March 28 - The Talpiot Tomb is discovered by construction workers in Jerusalem.  March 31 - Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad operates its final train.
April 2 - The St Pauls riot breaks out in Bristol.
April 7 - The United States severs diplomatic relations with Iran and imposes economic sanctions, following the taking of American hostages on November 4, 1979.
April 10 - In Lisbon, Portugal, the governments of Spain and the United Kingdom agree to reopen the border between Gibraltar and Spain in 1985, closed since 1969.
April 14 - Iron Maiden's debut self-titled album is released in the U.K. Iron Maiden
April 18 - Zimbabwe gains de jure independence from the United Kingdom with Robert Mugabe as its first Prime Minister.
April 21 -
April 24 - Pennsylvania Lottery Scandal: the Pennsylvania Lottery is rigged by six men including the host of the live TV drawing, Nick Perry.
April 24 - 25 - Operation Eagle Claw, a commando mission in Iran to rescue American embassy hostages, is aborted after mechanical problems ground the rescue helicopters. Eight United States troops are killed in a mid-air collision during the failed operation. 
April 25 - Dan-Air Flight 1008 crashes in Tenerife, killing all 146 occupants; at the time it was the worst air disaster involving a British-registered aircraft in terms of loss of life. 
April 26 - Louise and Charmian Faulkner disappear from outside their flat in St Kilda, Victoria, Australia.
April 27 - The Dominican embassy siege in Colombia ends with all remaining hostages released after the guerrillas are allowed to escape to Cuba. April 30
May 1 - "About that Urban Renaissance...", an article by journalist Dan Rottenberg in , contains the first recorded use of the word " Chicago yuppie". 
May 2 - Referendum on system of government held in Nepal.
May 4 - Yugoslav President Josip Broz Tito dies. The largest state funeral in history is organized, with state delegations from 128 different countries out of 154 UNO members at the time.
May 7 - Paul Geidel, convicted of second-degree murder in 1911, is released from prison in Beacon, New York, after 68 years and 245 days (the longest-ever time served by an inmate).
May 8 - Global eradication of smallpox certified by the World Health Organization.
May 16 - Rookie Magic Johnson scores 42 points to lead the Los Angeles Lakers to a 123-107 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers to clinch the National Basketball Association championship for the Lakers, who prevail despite the absence of future Basketball Hall of Fame center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
May 18 - The 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens volcano in Washington (state) kills 57 and causes US$3 billion in damage.
May 18 - 27 - Gwangju Uprising: Students in Gwangju, South Korea begin demonstrations, calling for democratic reforms.
May 20 - 1980 Quebec referendum: Voters in Quebec reject by a vote of 60% a proposal to seek independence from Canada.
May 22 - Pac-Man, the highest-earning arcade game of all time, is released in Japan.
May 25 - Indianapolis 500: Johnny Rutherford wins for a third time in car owner Jim Hall's revolutionary ground effect Chaparral car; the victory is Hall's second as an owner.
John Frum supporters in Vanuatu storm government offices on the island of Tanna. Vanuatu government troops land the next day and drive them away. In South Korea, military government forces and pro- democracy protesters clash; 2,000 protesters die.
May 28 - A fiery bus crash near the small village of Webb, Saskatchewan, claims 22 lives.  May 29 - Vernon Jordan is shot and critically injured in an assassination attempt in Fort Wayne, Indiana, by Joseph Paul Franklin (the first major news story for CNN).
July 1 - The State Rail Authority of New South Wales is founded.
July 8 - A wave of strikes begins in Lublin, Poland.
July 9 - Pope John Paul II visits Brazil; seven people are crushed to death in a crowd waiting to see him at afternoon Mass at the stadium in Fortaleza.
July 15 - Western Wisconsin Derecho: A severe and destructive thunderstorm strikes four counties in western Wisconsin, including the city of Eau Claire. It causes over $250 million in damage and one person is killed.
July 16 - Former California Governor and actor Ronald Reagan is nominated for U.S. president, at the 1980 Republican National Convention in Detroit. Influenced by the Religious Right, the convention also drops its long-standing support for the Equal Rights Amendment, dismaying moderate Republicans.
July 18 - India launches Rohini RS-1 Satellite using its own SLV rocket making India the 7th nation to launch satellites using its own rocket.
July 19 - Former Turkish Prime Minister Nihat Erim is killed by two gunmen in Istanbul, Turkey.
July 19 - August 3 - The 1980 Summer Olympics are held in Moscow, Soviet Union. 82 countries boycott the Games, athletes from 16 of them participate under a neutral flag.
July 25 - The album is released by the Australian band Back in Black AC/DC.
July 27 - Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, deposed Shah of Iran, dies in Cairo. July 30
Moscow Olympic Games on August 2, 1980
September 1 - Terry Fox is forced to end his Marathon of Hope run outside of Thunder Bay, Ontario, after finding out that the cancer has spread to his lungs.
September 2 - Ford Europe launches the Escort MK3, a new front-wheel drive hatchback.
September 3 - Zimbabwe breaks diplomatic and consular relations with South Africa, even though it maintains a commercial mission in Johannesburg.
September 5 - The Gotthard Road Tunnel opens in Switzerland as the world's longest highway tunnel at 16.3 kilometres (10.1 mi), stretching from Göschenen to Airolo beneath the Gotthard Pass.
September 11 - A referendum on a new constitution is held in Chile. A 67% of the ballots confirm the Constitution. The vote is held without electoral registers, opposition campaign and with electoral fraud.
September 12 - Kenan Evren stages a military coup in Turkey. It stops political gang violence, but begins stronger state violence leading to the execution of many young activists. 
September 17 - After weeks of strikes at the Lenin Shipyard in Gda?sk, Poland, the nationwide independent trade union Solidarity is established. 
September 21 - Bülent Ulusu, ex admiral, forms the new government of Turkey (44th government, composed mostly of technocrats). 
September 22 - The command council of Iraq orders its army to "deliver its fatal blow on Iranian military targets", initiating the Iran-Iraq War. 
September 30 - Digital Equipment Corporation, Intel and Xerox introduce the DIX standard for Ethernet, which is the first implementation outside of Xerox and the first to support 10 Mbit/s speeds. 
February 2 - Nina Zilli, Italian singer-songwriter 
February 5 - Robin Vik, Czech tennis player
February 9 - Angelos Charisteas, Greek footballer
February 11 - Matthew Lawrence, American actor 
February 15 - Petr Elfimov, Belarusian singer
February 17 - Jason Ritter, American actor and producer 
February 18 - Regina Spektor, Russian-American singer-songwriter 
February 22 - Jeanette Biedermann, German singer and actress
February 23 - Dmitry Sholokhov, Belarusian artist
February 26 - Júlio César da Silva e Souza, Brazilian footballer
March 1 - Shahid Afridi, Pakistani cricketer
March 2 - Rebel Wilson, Australian actress 
March 3 - Katherine Waterston, American actress 
March 4 - Omar Bravo, Mexican footballer
March 5 - Jessica Boehrs, German singer and actress
March 9 - Matthew Gray Gubler, American actor and filmmaker
March 10 - Chingy, American rapper, singer and actor
March 11 - Gabriela Pichler, Swedish film director and screenwriter
March 12 - Juliana Silveira, Brazilian actress
March 13 - Caron Butler, American basketball player
March 14 - Aaron Brown, English footballer
March 18 - Alexei Yagudin, Russian figure skater
March 19 - Johan Olsson, Swedish cross country skier
March 20 - Hamada Helal, Egyptian singer
March 30 - Yal?n, Turkish pop singer and songwriter March 31
April 1 - Randy Orton, American professional wrestler and actor
April 4 - Björn Wirdheim, Swedish racing driver
April 6 - Margarita Simonyan, Russian journalist
April 9 - Arlen Escarpeta, Belizean actor
April 12 - Brian McFadden, Irish pop singer
April 15 - Willie Mason, New Zealand-Australian rugby league player
April 22 - Nicolas Douchez, French footballer
April 27 - Zayed Khan, Indian actor
April 28 - Josh Howard, American basketball player
Akhdiyat Duta Modjo, Indonesian singer-songwriter, musician, actor, multi-instrumentalist and talent judge Luis Scola, Argentine basketball player
May 1 - Ana Claudia Talancón, Mexican actress
May 6 - Dimitris Diamantidis, Greek basketball player
May 7 - Johan Kenkhuis, Dutch swimmer
May 17 - Alistair Overeem, Dutch mixed martial artist and kickboxer
May 18 - Ali Zafar, Pakistani music composer, singer-songwriter, painter and actor 
May 19 - Dean Heffernan, Australian footballer
May 21 - Gotye, Belgian-Australian multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter
May 22 - Evelin Võigemast, Estonian actress and singer
May 24 - Cecilia Cheung, Hong Kong actress
May 29 - Michael Stasko, Canadian actor May 30 - Steven Gerrard, English footballer
June 1 - Damien Fahey, American MTV VJ, television host and drummer
June 3 - Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Emir of Qatar
June 6 - Mmusi Maimane, South African politician
June 8 - David Holoubek, Czech football manager
June 9 - David Oliver Cohen, American writer, actor and entrepreneur
June 17 - Venus Williams, American tennis player 
June 22 - Ilya Bryzgalov, Russian ice hockey player
June 25 - Philippe Lacheau, French actor, director and writer
June 29 - Katherine Jenkins, Welsh soprano June 30
July 8 - Robbie Keane, Irish footballer 
July 11 - Mathias Boe, Danish badminton player
July 12 - Kristen Connolly, American actress
July 13 - Pejman Nouri, Iranian football player
July 17 - Rashid Ramzi, Moroccan-Bahraini athlete
July 21 - CC Sabathia, American baseball player
July 25 - Cha Du-ri, South Korean footballer
July 26 - Jacinda Ardern, 40th Prime Minister of New Zealand 
July 27 - Nick Nemeth, American professional wrestler  July 29 - Fernando González, Chilean tennis player
September 9 - Michelle Williams, American actress
September 10 - Mikey Way, American musician ( My Chemical Romance) 
September 11 - Mike Comrie, Canadian ice hockey player
September 13 - Ben Savage, American actor
September 24 - Victoria Pendleton, English cyclist 
September 25 - T.I., African-American rap artist, film and music producer, actor and author
September 26 - Daniel and Henrik Sedin, Swedish ice hockey players
September 29 - Zachary Levi, American actor and singer  September 30
October 12 - Ledley King, English footballer
Ashanti, American singer, songwriter, record producer, model, dancer, and actress  Scott Parker, English footballer
October 14 - Ben Whishaw, English actor 
October 15 - Tom Boonen, Belgian cyclist
October 16 - Sue Bird, Israeli-American basketball player
October 17 - Yekaterina Gamova, Russian volleyball player 
October 18 - Reetinder Singh Sodhi, Indian cricket player
October 19 - José Bautista, Dominican baseball player
October 21 - Kim Kardashian, American socialite and television personality 
Monica, American singer, songwriter, actress, and businesswoman Casey Wilson, American actress and comedian  October 29 - Ben Foster, American actor
November 6 - Anri Jokhadze, Georgian pop singer
November 7 - Gervasio Deferr, Spanish gymnast
November 9 - Vanessa Lachey, American television personality, fashion model, and beauty queen 
November 10 - Calvin Chen, Taiwanese pop singer
November 12 - Ryan Gosling, Canadian actor and musician 
November 13 - Stalin González, Venezuelan lawyer and politician 
November 15 - Kevin Staut, French equestrian
November 16 - Kayte Christensen, American basketball player
November 18 - François Duval, Belgian rally driver
November 19 - Tofik Dibi, Dutch politician
November 24 - Edhie Yudhoyono, Indonesian politician
November 26 - Satoshi Ohno, Japanese singer
November 28 - Lisa Middelhauve, German singer ( Xandria) November 29
December 3 - Anna Chlumsky, American actress 
December 5 - Ibrahim Maalouf, Lebanese-born French trumpeter
December 7 - John Terry, English footballer
December 9 - Simon Helberg, American actor, comedian and musician
December 10 - Sarah Chang, American violinist 
December 13 - Bosco Wong, Hong Kong actor
December 16 - Kim Dae-myung, South Korean actor
December 20 - Ashley Cole, English footballer
December 21 - Stefan Liv, Swedish ice hockey player
December 22 - Andrey Stenin, Russian photojournalist (d. 2014)
December 27 - Cesaro, Swiss professional wrestler December 31 - Richie McCaw, New Zealand rugby player 
January 2 - Alessandro Bruschetti, Italian artist (b. 1910)
January 3 - Joy Adamson, Austrian-born conservationist and author (b. 1910; murdered) 
January 6 - Piersanti Mattarella, President of Sicily (b. 1935; assassinated) 
January 7 - Simonne Mathieu, French tennis champion (b. 1908)
January 8 - John Mauchly, American physicist and inventor (b. 1907) 
January 11 - Barbara Pym, English novelist (b. 1913) 
January 13 - Andre Kostelanetz, Russian conductor and arranger (b. 1901)
January 18 - Sir Cecil Beaton, English photographer (b. 1904) 
January 21 - Georges Painvin, French cryptographer (b. 1886)
January 24 - Lil Dagover, German actress (b. 1887) 
January 28 - Franco Evangelisti, Italian composer (b. 1926)
January 29 - Jimmy Durante, American actor, singer and comedian (b. 1893) 
January 31 - Eduardo Cáceres, Guatemalan politician (b. 1906)
February 7 - Sir Richard Williams, Royal Australian Air Force officer (b. 1890)
February 10 - Wels Eicke, Australian rules football player (b. 1893)
February 11 - R. C. Majumdar, Indian historian (b. 1884)
February 13 - David Janssen, American actor (b. 1931) 
February 14 - Luitkonwar Rudra Baruah, Assamese composer and actor (b. 1926)
February 17 - Graham Sutherland, English artist (b. 1903) 
February 21 - Aldo Andreotti, Italian mathematician (b. 1924)
February 22 - Oskar Kokoschka, Austrian painter and poet (b. 1886) 
February 23 - Enrico Celio, Swiss politician, 49th President of the Swiss Confederation (b. 1889)
February 26 - Mario Mattoli, Italian director and screenwriter (b. 1898)
February 27 - Shin'ichi Hisamatsu, Japanese philosopher (b. 1889) February 29 - Yigal Allon, Israeli politician and army general (b. 1918)
April 6 - Nils Ericson, Swedish actor (b. 1906)
April 9 - Muhammad Baqir al-Sadr, Iraqi cleric and philosopher (b. 1935)
April 10 - Kay Medford, American actress and singer (b. 1919)
April 11 - Ümit Kaftanc?o?lu, Turkish writer (b. 1935)
April 13 - Karl Stegger, Danish actor (b. 1913)
April 15 - Jean-Paul Sartre, French philosopher and writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1905) 
April 20 - Helmut Käutner, German director (b. 1908)
April 24 - Alejo Carpentier, Cuban writer (b. 1904)
April 26 - Cicely Courtneidge, British actress (b. 1893) 
April 27 - Mario Bava, Italian director (b. 1914)
April 29 - Alfred Hitchcock, British film director (b. 1899)  April 30 - Luis Muñoz Marín, the first elected Governor of Puerto Rico (1949 to 1965) (b. 1898)
June 1 - Rube Marquard, American baseball player ( New York Giants) and a member of the MLB Hall of Fame (b. 1886)
June 6 - Gualtiero De Angelis, Italian actor and voice actor (b. 1899)
June 9 - Shyam Kumari Khan, Indian lawyer (b. 1904)
June 13 - Walter Rodney, Guyanese historian and political figure (b. 1942)
June 14 - Sante Spessotto, Italian Roman Catholic priest and saint (b. 1923)
June 18 - Terence Fisher, British director (b. 1904)
June 21 - Bert Kaempfert, German orchestra leader and songwriter (b. 1923) 
June 24 - Boris Kaufman, Russian cinematographer (b. 1897)
June 26 - Syriac Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch Ignatius Jacob III (b. 1912)
June 28 - José Iturbi, Spanish conductor and musician (b. 1895)  June 29 - Jorge Basadre, Peruvian historian (b. 1903)
July 1 - C. P. Snow, British physicist and novelist (b. 1905) 
July 4 - Gregory Bateson, British anthropologist, anthropologist, social scientist, linguist, semiotician and cyberneticist (b. 1904) 
July 6 - Gail Patrick, American actress (b. 1911) 
July 7 - Prince Dmitri Alexandrovich of Russia (b. 1901)
July 8 - Rudolf Creutz, Austrian criminal (b. 1896)
July 9 - Vinicius de Moraes, Brazilian writer, poet and diplomat (b. 1913)
July 10 - Leonidas Zervas, Greek organic chemist (b. 1902)
July 13 - Seretse Khama, 1st President of Botswana (b. 1921) 
July 17 - Boris Delaunay, Russian mathematician (b. 1890)
July 19 - Nihat Erim, Turkish politician and jurist, 30th Prime Minister of Turkey (b. 1912)
July 20 - Lado Gudiashvili, Soviet painter (b. 1896)
July 21 - Salah al-Din al-Bitar, Syrian politician, 2-time Prime Minister of Syria (b. 1912)
July 22 - Hans-Georg Bürger, German racing driver (b. 1952)
July 24 - Peter Sellers, British comedian and actor (b. 1925) 
July 25 - Vladimir Vysotsky, Soviet singer-songwriter, poet and actor (b. 1938)
July 26 - Kenneth Tynan, English theatre critic (b. 1927)
July 27 - Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, Shah of Iran (b. 1919) 
July 28 - Maria Luisa Monteiro da Cunha, Brazilian librarian (b. 1908)
July 30 - Lucien Dalsace, French actor (b. 1893) July 31 - Pascual Jordan, German physicist (b. 1902)
August 1 - Patrick Depailler, French racing driver (b. 1944)
August 4 - Ioan Arhip, Romanian general (b. 1890)
August 14 - Dorothy Stratten, Canadian actress and model (b. 1960) 
August 18 - Arman, Iranian-born Soviet actor (b. 1921)
August 19 - Otto Frank, German father of Jewish diarist Anne Frank (b. 1889)
August 20 - Joe Dassin, American-born French singer-songwriter (b. 1938) 
August 22 - Gabriel González Videla, 24th President of Chile (b. 1898)
August 25 - Gower Champion, American theatre director, choreographer and dancer (b. 1919) 
August 26 - Tex Avery, American animator and director (b. 1908)  August 29 - Franco Basaglia, Italian psychiatrist and professor (b. 1924)
September 5 - Don Banks, Australian composer (b. 1923)
September 8 - Willard Libby, American chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1908) 
September 9 - Manzoor Ali Khan, Pakistani classical singer (b. 1922)
September 12 - Lillian Randolph, American actress (b. 1898)
September 14 - Domingo Acedo, Spanish football player (b. 1898)
September 15 - Bill Evans, American jazz pianist (b. 1929) 
September 16 - Jean Piaget, Swiss psychologist (b. 1896) 
September 17 - Anastasio Somoza Debayle, President of Nicaragua 1967-72, 1974-79 (b. 1925) 
September 18 - Katherine Anne Porter, American author (b. 1890)
September 19 - Sol Lesser, American film producer (b. 1890)
September 23 - Jacobus Johannes Fouché, 5th President of South Africa (b. 1898) September 25
October 2 - John Kotelawala, Sri Lanka soldier and politician, 3rd Prime Minister of Ceylon (b. 1895)
October 6 - Hattie Jacques, British actress (b. 1922)
October 7 - Sydney Gordon Russell, English designer and craftsman (b. 1892)
October 10 - Elizabeth Rummel, German-Canadian mountaineer and environmental activist (b. 1897)
October 12 - Alberto Demicheli, Uruguayan political figure, former President of Uruguay ( de facto) (b. 1896)
October 15 - Prince Peter of Greece and Denmark (b. 1908) 
October 18 - Hans Ehard, German lawyer and politician (b. 1887)
October 26 - Marcelo Caetano, Portuguese politician and scholar, 101st Prime Minister of Portugal (b. 1906)
October 29 - Giorgio Bor? Olivier, Maltese politician and statesman, 7th Prime Minister of Malta (b. 1911) October 31 - Jan Werich, Czech actor, playwright and writer (b. 1905)
December 2 - Romain Gary, Lithuanian-born writer (b. 1914) 
December 3 - Sir Oswald Mosley, British fascist leader (b. 1896) 
December 7 - Darby Crash, American rock songwriter, singer (b. 1958)
December 8 - John Lennon, English singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1940) 
December 10 - Patriarch Benedict I of Jerusalem (b. 1892)
December 12 - Bruno Bartolozzi, Italian composer (b. 1911)
December 14 - Nichita Smochin?, Moldovan activist (b. 1894)
December 19 - Héctor José Cámpora, Argentine Peronist politician, 38th President of Argentina (b. 1909)
December 21 - Marc Connelly, American playwright (b. 1890) 
December 29 - Tim Hardin, American musician (b. 1941)  December 31
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