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1986 ( MCMLXXXVI) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar, the 1986th year of the Common Era (CE) and (AD) designations, the 986th year of the Anno Domini 2nd millennium, the 86th year of the 20th century, and the 7th year of the 1980s decade.
The year 1986 was designated as the
International Year of Peace by the United Nations.
March 1 - Olof Palme's deputy Ingvar Carlsson becomes acting Prime Minister of Sweden. He is elected Prime Minister by the Swedish Riksdag on March 15.
March 3 - The first paper is published describing the atomic force microscope invented the previous year by Gerd Binnig, Calvin Quate and Christopher Berger. 
March 8 - The Japanese Suisei probe flies by Halley's Comet, studying its UV hydrogen corona and solar wind.
March 9 - United States Navy divers find the largely intact but heavily damaged crew compartment of the Space Shuttle ; the bodies of all seven Challenger astronauts are still inside.
March 13 - In a Black Sea incident, American cruiser USS and the Yorktown destroyer USS , claiming the right of Caron innocent passage, enter the Soviet territorial waters near the southern Crimean Peninsula.
March 14 - Microsoft Corporation holds its initial public offering of stock shares.
March 15 - Hotel New World collapses, 33 killed and 17 rescued from rubble.
March 25 - The 58th Academy Awards are held in Los Angeles, with winning Out of Africa Best Picture.
March 26 - An article in charges that The New York Times Kurt Waldheim, former United Nations Secretary-General and candidate for president of Austria, may have been involved in Nazi war crimes during World War II.
March 27 - Russell Street Bombing: A car bomb explodes at Russell Street Police Headquarters in Russell Street, Melbourne, killing a woman constable, the first Australian policewoman to be killed in the line of duty. March 31
April April - The government of
Ivory Coast requests international diplomatic use of the French form of its name, Côte d'Ivoire.
April 1 - Sector Kanda: Communist Party of Nepal (Mashal) cadres attack a number of police stations in Kathmandu, seeking to incite a popular rebellion.
April 2 - A bomb explodes on a Trans World Airlines flight from Rome to Athens, killing 4 people.
April 11 - The infamous FBI shootout in Miami results in the death of two FBI agents and the wounding of five others.
April 13 - Pope John Paul II officially visits the Great Synagogue of Rome, the first time a modern Pope has visited a synagogue.
April 13 - The first child born to a non-related surrogate mother is born. 
April 14 - Hailstones weighing 1 kilogram (2.2 lb) fall on Gopalganj District, Bangladesh, killing 92.
April 15 - Operation El Dorado Canyon: At least 15 people die after United States planes bomb targets in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, and the Benghazi region.
April 16 - The United Kingdom and the Kingdom of the Netherlands sign a peace treaty, thus ending the Three Hundred and Thirty Five Years' War, one of the longest wars in human history. 
April 21 - Lorimar-Telepictures launches as a mass media company.
April 26 - Chernobyl disaster: A mishandled safety test at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Pripyat, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union "killed at least 4,056 people and damaged almost $7 billion of property". Radioactive fallout from the accident is concentrated near  Belarus, Ukraine and Russia and at least 350,000 people are forcibly resettled away from these areas. After the accident, "traces of radioactive deposits unique to Chernobyl were in nearly every country in the northern hemisphere". 
April 27 - " Captain Midnight" interrupts the HBO satellite feed. April 29 - The Diamond Jubilee of Hirohito is held at the Kokugikan in Tokyo.
October 1 - U.S. President Ronald Reagan signs the Goldwater-Nichols Act into law, making official the largest reorganization of the United States Department of Defense since the Air Force was made a separate branch of service in 1947.
October 3 - TASCC, a superconducting cyclotron, officially opens at Chalk River Laboratories. A hybrid solar eclipse was visible off the coast of Iceland, and was the 53rd solar eclipse of Solar Saros 124.
October 10 - The 5.7 M w San Salvador earthquake shook San Salvador, El Salvador with a maximum Mercalli intensity of IX (Violent). Up to 1,500 people were killed.
October 11 - 12 - Cold War: Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev meet in Reykjavík, Iceland, to continue discussions about scaling back their intermediate missile arsenals in Europe, which end in failure. 
October 16 - The International Olympic Committee chooses Albertville, France to be the host city of the 1992 Winter Olympics and Barcelona, Spain to be the host city of the 1992 Summer Olympics. The IOC also announces that the summer and winter games will separate with the winter games on every even, common year; and the summer games on every leap year starting from 1992. 
October 19 - Mozambican President Samora Machel's plane crashes in South Africa.
October 21 - The Marshall Islands became an associated state under the Compact of Free Association.
October 22 - In New York City, WNBC Radio's traffic helicopter crashes into the Hudson River, killing traffic reporter Jane Dornacker. The last words heard on-the-air are Dornacker's screams of terror, "Hit the water! Hit the water! Hit the water!"
Bus deregulation goes into effect in the United Kingdom, except Greater London and Northern Ireland. The state funeral of President Samora Machel of Mozambique takes place in Maputo.
October 29 - British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher officially opens the M25 Motorway, which encircles Greater London, in a ceremony on the carriageway near Potters Bar. It became Europe's second longest orbital road upon completion, and provides the first and only full bypass of London.
December 7 - A magnitude 5.7 earthquake destroys most of the Bulgarian town of Strajica, killing 2 people.
December 14 - Rutan Voyager, an experimental aircraft designed by Burt Rutan and piloted by Dick Rutan and Jeana Yeager, begins its flight around the world from Edwards Air Force Base in the United States.
December 16 - Jeltoqsan, mass anti-government protests, break out across the Kazakh SSR, resulting in the massacre of over 165 protesters.
December 19 - Soviet dissident Andrei Sakharov is permitted to return to Moscow after six years of internal exile.
December 20 - Three African Americans are assaulted by a group of white teens in the Howard Beach neighborhood of Queens, New York. One of the victims, Michael Griffith, is run over and killed by a motorist while attempting to flee the attackers.
December 23 - Rutan Voyager completes the first nonstop circumnavigation of the earth by air without refueling in 9 days, 3 minutes and 44 seconds. December 31
March 2 - Ethan Peck, American actor
March 4 - Margo Harshman, American actress
March 9 - Brittany Snow, American actress, producer, director and singer
March 14 - Jamie Bell, English actor and dancer
March 15 - Jai Courtney, Australian actor
Lykke Li, Swedish singer-songwriter Simon Curtis, American singer-songwriter, record producer, and actor
March 19 - Anne Vyalitsyna, Russian model
March 20 - Ruby Rose, Australian actress and model
March 22 - Matt Bush, American actor
March 24 - Valentin Chmerkovskiy, Ukrainian-American dancer
Lindsay Lohan, American actress, singer-songwriter, businesswoman, fashion designer, and film producer Bruno Rezende, Brazilian volleyball player
July 3 - Felixia Yeap, Malaysian model
July 11 - Raúl García, Spanish footballer
July 13 - Stanley Weber, French actor and theatre director
July 15 - Mishael Morgan, Canadian actress
July 19 - Jinder Mahal, Canadian professional wrestler
July 20 - Osric Chau, Canadian actor and martial artist
July 22 - Zeus, Motswana hip-hop artist, MC and businessman
July 25 - Hulk, Brazilian footballer
July 26 - Monica Raymund, American actress
July 27 - Nathan Stephenson, Canadian actor
July 31 - Evgeni Malkin, Russian hockey player
August 4 - Oleg Ivanov, Russian footballer
August 6 - Bryan Young, Canadian ice hockey player
August 13 - Wesley Taylor, American actor and writer
August 14 - Nigel Boogaard, Australian footballer
August 15 - Natalia Keery-Fisher, English singer-songwriter
August 19 - Christina Perri, American pop and rock musician
August 20 - Ryo Katsuji, Japanese actor and voice actor
August 26 - Big K.R.I.T., American rapper
August 27 - Sebastian Kurz, Austrian politician, 25th Chancellor of Austria
September 1 - Jean Sarkozy, French politician
OMI, Jamaican-born singer Shaun White, American professional snowboarder
September 5 - Davida Williams, American actress, singer, dancer, director, and producer
September 6 - Inna Zhukova, Belarusian rhythmic gymnast
September 7 - Charlie Daniels, English footballer
September 9 - José Aldo, Brazilian mixed martial artist
September 13 - Kamui Kobayashi, Japanese professional racing driver
September 21 - Lindsey Stirling, American violinist, dancer, performance artist, and composer
September 23 - Kaylee DeFer, American actress
September 25 - Steve Forrest, American drummer
September 27 - Natasha Thomas, Danish singer and songwriter
September 28 - Andrés Guardado, Mexican footballer September 30
October 3 - Joonas Suotamo, Finnish basketball player and actor
October 5 - Novica Veli?kovi?, Serbian basketball player
October 9 - Laure Manaudou, French swimmer
October 17 - Mohombi, Congolese urban singer-songwriter and dancer
October 18 - Loukas Giorkas, Greek-Cypriot singer and model
October 20 - Elyse Taylor, Australian model
October 25 - Chiquito Felipe do Carmo, East Timorese football player
October 28 - Tamar Kaprelian, Armenian-American musician and singer
October 30 - Thomas Morgenstern, Austrian Olympic ski jumper October 31 - Brent Corrigan, American porn actor and director
January 6 - Una Merkel, American actress (b. 1903)
January 7 - Juan Rulfo, Mexican writer (b. 1917)
January 8 - Maria L. de Hernández, Mexican-born American rights activist (b. 1896)
January 10 - Jaroslav Seifert, Czech writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1901)
January 12 - Juan Carlos Corazzo, Uruguayan football player (b. 1907)
January 13 - Abdul Fattah Ismail, Leader of the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen ( South Yemen) (b. 1939)
January 16 - Herbert W. Armstrong, founded the Worldwide Church of God (b. 1892)
January 17 - Abdul Majid Kubar, 4th Prime Minister of Libya (b. 1909)
January 23 - Willard Van Dyke, American filmmaker and photographer (b. 1906)
January 28 - In the :
Challenger disaster January 29 - Leif Erickson, American actor (b. 1911)
February 2 - Gino Hernandez, American professional wrestler (b. 1957)
February 6 - Frederick Coutts, the 8th General of The Salvation Army (b. 1899)
February 8 - Sarah Isabella McElligott, New Zealand cook and fruit-stall holder (b. 1883)
February 10 - Brian Aherne, British actor (b. 1902)
February 13 - Guang Qin, Chinese Buddhist monk and teacher (b. 1892)
February 14 - Edmund Rubbra, British composer (b. 1901)
February 16 - Howard Da Silva, American actor (b. 1909)
February 19 - Francisco Mignone, Brazilian classical music (b. 1897)
February 20 - Bert Schneider, Canadian boxer (b. 1897)
February 24 - Tommy Douglas, Canadian politician and " Father of medicare" in Canada (b. 1904)
February 25 - Pasquale Festa Campanile, Italian screenwriter, film director and novelist (b. 1927)
February 27 - Jacques Plante, Canadian hockey player (b. 1929) February 28
April 1 - Erik Bruhn, Danish danseur and choreographer (b. 1928)
April 3 - Sir Peter Pears, English tenor (b. 1910)
April 6 - El Solitario, Mexican professional wrestler (b. 1946)
April 7 - Leonid Kantorovich, Russian economist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1912)
April 8 - Yukiko Okada, Japanese idol singer (b. 1967)
April 13 - Stephen Stucker, American actor (b. 1947)
April 20 - Aleksei Arbuzov, Soviet playwright (b. 1908)
April 21 - Salah Jahin, Egyptian poet, lyricist, playwright and cartoonist (b. 1930)
April 22 - Mircea Eliade, Romanian historian of religions and writer (b. 1907)
April 24 - The Duchess of Windsor (b. 1896)
April 27 - J. Allen Hynek, American ufologist (b. 1910)
April 29 - Gilbert Baker, British Anglican bishop and missionary (b. 1910) April 30 - Robert Stevenson, English film director (b. 1905)
June 3 - Dame Anna Neagle, English actress (b. 1904)
June 4 - Paul Stevens, American actor (b. 1921)
June 5 - Bryan Grant, American tennis champion (b. 1909)
June 5 - Bruce Nickell
June 11 - Chesley Bonestell, American painter (b. 1888)
June 11 - Susan Snow, victim of Excedrin poisoning (b. 1946)
June 15 - Walter V. Schaefer, American jurist and educator (b. 1904)
June 16 - Maurice Duruflé, French composer (b. 1902)
Len Bias, American basketball player (b. 1963) Coluche, stage name of Michel Colucci, French comedian and humorist (b. 1944)
June 21 - Assi Rahbani, Lebanese composer, musician, conductor and author (b. 1923)
June 27 - Don Rogers, American football player (b. 1962)
June 28 - Mary Anderson, American actress (b. 1897)
June 30 - Guan Zilan, Chinese avant-garde painter (b. 1903)
July 3 - Rudy Vallée, American singer, actor, and bandleader (b. 1901)
July 4 - Oscar Zariski, Russian mathematician (b. 1899)
July 6 - Jagjivan Ram, Indian politician (b. 1908)
July 10 - Jody Lawrance, American actress (b. 1930)
July 12 - Wac?aw Kisielewski, Polish pianist (b. 1943)
July 13 - Patriarch Nicholas VI of Alexandria (b. 1913)
July 16 - Robert Boothby, Baron Boothby, British politician (b. 1900)
July 20 - Helen Craig, American actress (b. 1912)
July 21 - Ernest Maas, American screenwriter (b. 1892)
July 26 - W. Averell Harriman, American diplomat and politician (b. 1891)
July 27 - Osbert Lancaster, British cartoonist (b. 1908) July 31
August 1 - Ignatius Joseph Kasimo Hendrowahyono, Indonesian politician (b. 1900)
August 4 - Willem Ruis, Dutch game show host (b. 1945)
August 6 - Emilio Fernández, Mexican film director, actor and screenwriter (b. 1904)
August 10 - Chuck McKinley, American tennis champion (b. 1941)
August 13 - Pius Anthony Benincasa, American Roman Catholic bishop (b. 1913)
August 15 - Felix Tikotin, architect and art collector (b. 1893)
August 16 - Jaime Sáenz, Bolivian poet, novelist, and short story writer (b. 1921)
August 21 - Thad Jones, American jazz musician (b. 1923)
August 22 - Celâl Bayar, Turkish politician, 3rd Prime Minister of Turkey and President of Turkey (b. 1883)
August 26 - Ted Knight, American actor (b. 1923)
August 27 - George Nepia, New Zealand Maori rugby player (b. 1905)
August 29 - Arthur Meyerhoff, American advertising agency executive and entrepreneur (b. 1895)
August 30 - George Pelawa, American ice hockey star Minnesota Mr. Hockey (b. 1968) August 31
September 4 - Hank Greenberg, American baseball player and member of the MLB Hall of Fame (b. 1911)
September 6 - Blanche Sweet, American actress (b. 1896)
September 12 - Frank Nelson, American actor (b. 1911)
September 18 - Pat Phoenix, English actress (b. 1923)
September 21 - Cheryl Keeton, American murder victim (b. 1949)
September 22 - József Asbóth, Hungarian tennis champion (b. 1917)
September 23 - Gottfried Freiherr von Banfield, Austro-Hungarian naval aeroplane pilot in the First World War (b. 1890)
September 25 - Nikolay Semyonov, Russian chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1896)
September 26 - Noboru Terada, Japanese Olympic swimmer (b. 1917)
September 29 - Prince George Valdemar of Denmark (b. 1920) September 30 - Storm Jameson, English journalist and author (b. 1891)
October 3 - Han Xianchu, Chinese army general and politician (b. 1913)
October 4 - Arno von Lenski, German military officer and general (b. 1893)
October 7 - Wallace Wade, American football coach (b. 1892)
October 10 - Michele Pellegrino, Italian Roman Catholic cardinal (b. 1903)
October 14 - Keenan Wynn, American character actor (b. 1916)
October 15 - Jerry Smith, American football All Pro tight end, Washington Redskins, NFL (b. 1943)
October 19 - Samora Machel, Mozambican military commander, politician and revolutionary, 1st President of Mozambique (b. 1933)
October 21 - Fritz Hochwälder, Austrian author (b. 1911)
October 22 - Albert Szent-Györgyi, Hungarian physiologist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1893)
October 23 - Edward Adelbert Doisy, American biochemist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (b. 1893)
October 25 - Forrest Tucker, American actor (b. 1919)
October 26 - Jackson Scholz, American Olympic athlete (b. 1897)
October 28 - Ian Marter, English actor and writer (b. 1944) October 31 - Robert S. Mulliken, American physicist and chemist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (b. 1896)
November 2 - Paul Frees, American voice actor (b. 1920)
November 3 - Vladimir Bobri, Soviet composer (b. 1898)
November 4 - Abdallah El-Yafi, Lebanese politician, 9th Prime Minister of Lebanon (b. 1901)
November 5 - Claude Jutra, Canadian film director (b. 1930)
November 6 - Elisabeth Grümmer, Alsatian soprano (b. 1911)
November 10 - Rogelio de la Rosa, Filipino actor and politician (b. 1916)
November 11 - Roger C. Carmel, American actor (b. 1932)
November 12 - Faiz Ahmad, Afghan revolutionary leader (b. 1946)
November 13 - Franco Cortese, Italian racing driver (b. 1903)
November 15 - Alexandre Tansman, French composer and virtuoso pianist (b. 1897)
November 16 - Siobhán McKenna, Irish actress (b. 1923)
November 18 - Gia Carangi, American supermodel (b. 1960)
November 19 - Flukey Stokes, American mobster (b. 1937)
November 25 - Ivan Magill, Irish-born anaesthetist (b. 1888) November 29 - Cary Grant, British actor (b. 1904)
December 6 - Alexander Hollaender, researcher in radiobiology (b. 1898)
December 7 - Homa J. Porter, Texas businessman and political activist (b. 1896)
December 8 - Anatoly Marchenko, Soviet dissident and author (b. 1938)
December 12 - Paul Verner, German politician (b. 1911)
December 15 - Serge Lifar, Soviet dancer and choreographer (b. 1905)
December 18 - Andrew Tsu, Chinese Anglican bishop (b. 1885)
December 21 - Willy Coppens, Belgian pilot (b. 1892)
December 22 - Mary Burchell, British novelist and campaigner for Jewish refugees (b. 1904)
December 26 - Elsa Lanchester, British-American actress (b. 1902)
December 28 - Jan Nieuwenhuys, Dutch painter (b. 1922)
December 31 - Lloyd Haynes, American actor (b. 1934)
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^ a b
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