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- January 3 - Robert Mugabe and the Zimbabwe African National Union initiate the Gukurahundi, a series of violent ethnic massacres and pogroms designed to quell dissent among the Ndebele tribe.
- April 3 - The 1983 Lucanamarca Massacre occurs when Shining Path kills 69 people in and around the town of Lucanamarca.
- April 3 - Al-Muhajiroun is founded by Omar Bakri Mohammed.
- June 5 - Beginning of the Second Sudanese Civil War.
- July 10 - Martial law in Poland is lifted. The Military Council of National Salvation is disbanded.
- July 23 - The Sri Lankan Civil War begins when the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam begin an insurgency to create an independent state of Tamil Eelam.
- August 4 - Thomas Sankara comes to power in Upper Volta following a successful coup.
- August 8 - Efraín Ríos Montt is deposed as President of Guatemala in a coup lead by Óscar Humberto Mejía Victores.
- August 21 - Benigno Aquino Jr. is assasinated at the Manila International Airport (now known as the Ninoy Aquino International Airport), allegedly on the orders of President Ferdinand Marcos.
- September 1 - Korean Air Lines Flight 007 is shot down over the Sea of Japan by the Soviet Air Force, who believe it to be an American spy plane. All 269 passengers and crew are killed.
- October 10 - Menachem Begin's term as Prime Minister of Israel ends. Yitzhak Shamir is elected as his successor.
- December 10 - The National Reorganization Process junta of Argentina is dissolved.
- December 31 - Muhammad Buhari seizes power in Nigeria in a military coup.
- Unknown - The Family Research Council is founded.
- January 22 - Robert Steinhäuser
- March 17 - Martin Shkreli
- July 1 - Michael Carneal
- July 21 - Kellen Winslow II
- July 31 - Augustus Sol Invictus
- August 20 - Dmitry Vinogradov
- August 21 - Yukio Yamaji
- September 22 - Jason Kessler
- October 5 - George Zimmerman
- December 10 - Simon Lindberg
- January 6 - Kelly Fleming
- February 19 - Matthew Kechter
- March 7 - Richard Pearlman (9/11 Victim)
- April 18 - Jonathan Sellers
- May 3 - Randy Gordon (Santana High School shooting victim)
- June 25 - Daniel Mauser
- July 13 - Brandon Armstrong (First Child of Susan Eubanks)
- July 16 - Philando Castile
- August 6 - Ebony Simpson
- January 15 - Meyer Lansky
- May 5 - Horst Schumann
- May 25 - Idris of Libya
- July 16 - Michel Micombero
- August 19 - Aleksandar Ranković
- May 11 - Nancy Argentino
- May 19 - Cheryl Downs
- August 21 - Benigno Aquino Jr.