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- January 11 - Enver Hoxha declares the formation of the People's Republic of Albania, with himself as prime minister.
- February 22 to May 3 - The Texarkana Moonlight Murders: five people are murdered and three are injured by an unidentified serial killer known as the Phantom Killer in Texarkana, Texas over a span of three-and-a-half months.
- March 2 - Hồ Chí Minh is elected President of North Vietnam.
- March 15 - The NKVD is dissolved.
- April 5 - The Democrat Party is founded.
- April 21 - The Socialist Unity Party of Germany is founded.
- May 4 - SMERSH is dissolved.
- May 11 - The United Malays National Organisation is founded.
- July 22 - King David Hotel bombing: the Irgun bombs the King David Hotel (headquarters of the British civil and military administration) in Jerusalem, killing 90.
- July 25 - In the last mass lynching in the United States, a mob of white supremacists shoot and kill two African-American couples, near Moore's Ford Bridge in Georgia.
- September 30 to October 1 - Ten high-ranking members of the Nazi Party are hanged at Nuremberg by the International Military Tribunal for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed during World War II.
- October 10 to November 9 - The Noakhali riots take place in Bengal: the Muslim National Guard massacre Hindus in Bengal en masse, leaving an estimated 5000 people dead.
- December 19 - Beginning of the First Indochina War.
- Unknown - The School of the Americas is established by the United States Army.
- January 8 - Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo
- January 14 - Harold Shipman
- February 4 - Isaias Afewerki
- March 18 - José González
- March 21 - Kenneth McDuff
- April - Pauline Nyiramasuhuko
- May 20 - Larry Loveless
- June 2 - Peter Sutcliffe
- June 7 - Robert Tilton
- July 15 - Hassanal Bolkiah
- August 16 - Masoud Barzani
- August 22- Marcus Wesson
- August 27 - Peter Tobin
- August 29 - Jean-Baptiste Bagaza
- September 2 - Dan White
- November 24 - Ted Bundy
- November 25 - Richard Cottingham
- Unknown - Wenche Behring
- Unknown - Louis Beam
- March 13 - Yonatan Netanyahu
- June 18 - Frank "Bruiser Brody" Goodish
- December 2 - Gianni Versace
- December 18 - Steve Biko
- January 3 - William Joyce
- January 8 - Harold Cole
- February 3 - Friedrich Jeckeln
- February 23 - Tomoyuki Yamashita
- February 28 - Béla Imrédy
- March 14 - Werner von Blomberg
- March 29 - László Baky & László Endre
- April 3 - Masaharu Homma
- April 11 - Andor Jaross
- May 16 - Bruno Tesch
- June 1 - Ion Antonescu
- July 17 - Draža Mihailović
- August 20 - Vojtech Tuka
- August 22 - Döme Sztójay
- September 13 - Amon Göth
- October 15 - Hermann Göring
- October 16 - Ernst Kaltenbrunner, Hans Frank, Wilhelm Frick, Wilhelm Keitel, Joachim von Ribbentrop, Alfred Rosenberg, Fritz Sauckel, Arthur Seyss-Inquart, Julius Streicher and Alfred Jodl
- October 24 - Kurt Daluege
- October 26 - Otto Georg Thierack
- December 21 - Eugene Talmadge