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- January 14 - Josip Broz Tito is named President of Yugoslavia.
- February 3 - The Batepá Massacre takes place.
- June 13 - Gustavo Rojas Pinilla leads a successful coup, overthrowing Laureano Gómez Castro and declaring himself President of Colombia.
- July 26 - Fidel Castro and Che Guevara launch the Cuban Revolution.
- July 27 - The Korean War ends in a stalemate.
- August 15 to 19 - Operation Ajax: Mohammad Mosaddegh is overthrown as Prime Minister of Iran, returning centralized power to Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.
- September 14 - Nikita Khrushchev is named First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. He soon begins the process of "De-Stalinization".
- October 14 - The Qibya Massacre takes place.
- October 29 - Frank Costello is released from prison, following his arrest for contempt of court during the Kefauver Committee the previous year.
- December - The Church of Scientology is founded.
- Unknown - Hizb ut-Tahrir is founded.
- January 1 - Afonso Dhlakama
- January 15 - Robert Alton Harris
- January 16 - Robert Jay Mathews
- January 20 - Jeffrey Epstein
- March 3 - Jean de Dieu Kamuhanda
- March 12 - Ron Jeremy
- April 9 - Stephen Paddock
- April 29 - Midhat Mursi
- May 10 - Earl Bradley
- May 27 - Gheorghe Dincă
- June 1 - David Berkowitz
- June 15 - Xi Jinping
- July 23 - Najib Razak
- July 28 - Don Black
- August 21 - David Alan Gore
- October 14 - Bobby Joe Long
- October 18 - Brian David Mitchell
- November 7 - Carl Eugene Watts
- November 29 - Rosemary West
- Unknown - Jean-Paul Akayesu
- Unknown - Jean-Baptiste Gatete
- Unknown - John Bingham
- Unknown - Callixte Nzabonimana
- January 27 - Blaine Hodges
- March 28 - Melchior Ndadaye
- May 23 - Agathe Uwilingiyimana
- March 5 - Joseph Stalin
- March 14 - Klement Gottwald
- June 19 - Julius and Ethel Rosenberg
- July 15 - John Christie
- September 5 - Richard Walther Darré
- September 27 - Hans Fritzsche
- December 23 - Lavrentiy Beria
- September 28 - Bobby Greenlease, Jr.