December 28 - William X. Kienzle, American novelist (b. 1928)
December 31 - Eileen Heckart, American actress (b. 1919)
January 2 - Sila Calderón becomes the first female Governor of Puerto Rico.
January 9 - Shenzhou 2, an unmanned Chinese spacecraft, is launched.
January 9 - Apple announced iTunes at the Macworld Expo in San Francisco, for organizing and playing digital music and videos. Now widely used by Windows and Mac users.
January 10 - A large piece of the chalk cliff at Beachy Head collapses into the sea.
January 13 - An earthquake hits El Salvador, killing more than 800.
January 15 - Wikipedia, a free Wiki content encyclopedia, goes online.
January 16 - The First surviving wikipedia edit. (See UuU)
January 16 - Congolese President Laurent-Désiré Kabila is assassinated by one of his own bodyguards.
January 16 - US President Bill Clinton awards former President Theodore Roosevelt a posthumous Medal of Honor for his service in the Spanish-American War.
January 17 - President Bill Clinton posthumously raises Meriwether Lewis' rank from Lieutenant to Captain.
January 20 - Philippine president Joseph Estrada is ousted in a nonviolent 4-day revolution, and is succeeded by Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
January 23 - The Chinese Communist Party stages a self-immolation in Tiananmen Square to frame Falun Gong and escalate the persecution.
January 25 - A 50-year-old Douglas DC-3 crashes near Ciudad Bolivar, Venezuela killing 24.
January 26 - An earthquake hits Gujarat, India, causing more than 20,000 deaths.
January 29 - Thousands of student protesters in Indonesia storm parliament and demand that President Abdurrahman Wahid resign due to alleged involvement in corruption scandals.
January 31 - In the Netherlands a Scottish court convicts a Libyan and acquits another for their part in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 which crashed into Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988.
February 9 - The American submarine USS Greeneville accidentally strikes and sinks the Ehime-Maru, a Japanese training vessel operated by the Uwajima Fishery High School.
February 12 - NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft touchdown in the "saddle" region of 433 Eros becoming the first spacecraft to land on an asteroid.
February 13 - An earthquake measuring 6.6 on the Richter Scale hits El Salvador, killing at least 400.
February 15 - First draft of the complete Human Genome is published in Nature
February 18 - FBI agent Robert Hanssen is arrested for spying for the Soviet Union. He was ultimately convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
February 19 - An Oklahoma City bombing museum is dedicated at the Oklahoma City National Memorial.
February 26 - The Taliban destroy two giant Buddha statues in Bamyan, Afghanistan.
February 28 - The Nisqually Earthquake measuring 6.8 on the Richter Scale hits the Nisqually Valley and the Seattle, Tacoma, and Olympia area of the U.S. state of Washington.
February 28 - Six passengers and four railway staff are killed and a further 82 people suffer serious injuries in the Selby rail crash.
March 4 - 4 March 2001 BBC bombing: a massive car bomb explodes in front of the BBC Television Centre in London, seriously injuring 11 people. The attack was attributed to the Real IRA.
March 4 - Hintze Ribeiro disaster, a bridge collapses in northern Portugal, killing up to 70 people.
March 5 - In Mecca, 35 Muslim pilgrims are crushed to death during the annual Hajj pilgrimage.
March 19 - The Bank of Japan issued a monetary policy known as quantitative easing, which stimulated the Japanese economy after the burst of the dot-com bubble.
March 23 - The Russian Mir space station is disposed of, breaking up in the atmosphere before falling into the southern Pacific Ocean near Fiji.
April 1 - An EP-3E United States Navy plane collides with a Chinese People's Liberation Army fighter jet. The Navy crew makes an emergency landing in Hainan, People's Republic of China and is detained. See Hainan Island incident.
April 1 - Former president of Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Slobodan Milošević surrenders to police special forces, to be tried on charges of war crimes.
April 1 - Same-sex marriage becomes legal in the Netherlands, which is the first country to allow it.
April 11 - The detained crew of a United States EP-3E aircraft that landed in Hainan, People's Republic of China after a collision with an J-8 fighter is released.
April 28 - Millionaire Dennis Tito becomes the world's first space tourist.
April 30 - The Mitchell Report on the Arab-Israeli conflict is published.
May 3 - The United States loses its seat on the U.N. Human Rights Commission for the first time since the commission was formed in 1947.
May 4 - The Milwaukee Art Museum addition, the first Santiago Calatrava-designed structure in the United States, opens to the public.
May 6 - During a trip to Syria, Pope John Paul II becomes the first pope to enter a mosque.
May 9 - In Ghana 129 football fans die in what became known as the Accra Sports Stadium Disaster. The deaths were caused by a stampede (caused by the firing of teargas by police personnel at the stadium)that followed a controversial decision by the referee handling a crucial match between arch-rivals Accra Hearts of Oak and Kumasi Asante Kotoko.
May 10 - In Ghana, a stampede at a football game kills over 120 spectators.
May 13 - Silvio Berlusconi's House of Freedoms coalition wins the Italian general elections.
May 21 - French Taubira law officially recognizes the Atlantic slave trade and slavery as crimes against humanity.
May 24 - Mountain climbing: 15-year-old Sherpa Temba Tsheri becomes the youngest person to climb to the top of Mount Everest.
May 24 - The Versailles wedding hall disaster in Jerusalem, Israel, kills 23 and injures over 200 in Israel's worst-ever civil disaster.
May 24 - The Democrats gain control of the U.S. Senate for the first time since 1994 when Senator James Jeffords of Vermont abandons the Republican Party and declares himself an independent.
May 25 - 32-year-old Erik Weihenmayer, of Boulder, Colorado, becomes the first blind person to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
May 29 - U.S. Supreme Court rules that disabled golfer Casey Martin can use a cart to ride in tournaments.
May 29 - International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers inaugurated.
June 1 - Dipendra of Nepal slaughters his family during dinner.
June 1 - Dolphinarium massacre: an Hamas suicide bomber kills 21 at a disco in Tel Aviv.
June 4 - Gyanendra, the last King of Nepal, ascends to the throne after the massacre in the Royal Palace.
June 5 - U.S. Senator Jim Jeffords leaves the Republican Party, an act which shifts control of the United States Senate from the Republicans to the Democratic Party.
June 5 - Tropical Storm Allison makes landfall on the upper-Texas coastline as a strong tropical storm and dumps large amounts of rain over Houston. The storm caused $5.5 billion in damages, making Allison the costliest tropical storm in U.S. history.
June 7 - Tony Blair's Labour Party wins another landslide victory in the General Election.
June 11 - Timothy McVeigh is executed for his role in the Oklahoma City bombing.
June 14 - China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan form the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.
June 18 - Protests occur in Manipur over the extension of the ceasefire between Naga insurgents and the government of India.
June 21 - A federal grand jury in Alexandria, Virginia, indicts 13 Saudis and a Lebanese in the 1996 bombing of the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia that killed 19 American servicemen.
June 27 - The International Court of Justice finds against the United States in its judgement in the LaGrand Case.
July 2 - AbioCor self contained artificial heart created.
July 3 - A Vladivostok Avia Tupolev TU-154 jetliner crashes on approach to landing at Irkutsk, Russia killing 145 people.
July 20 - Italy: The 27th Annual G8 summit opens in Genoa. An Italian protester in Genoa, Carlo Giuliani, is shot by police.
July 24 - Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, the last Tsar of Bulgaria when he was a child, is sworn in as Prime Minister of Bulgaria, becoming the first monarch in history to regain political power through democratic election to a different office.
August 1 - An agreement is reached on the position of the minority Albanian language in the Republic of Macedonia.
August 1 - Bulgaria, Cyprus, Latvia, Malta, Slovenia and Slovakia join the European Environment Agency.
August 1 - Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore has a Ten Commandments monument installed in the judiciary building, leading to a lawsuit to have it removed and his own removal from office.
August 3 - The Real IRA detonate a car bomb in Ealing, London, U.K injuring seven people. (See 3 August 2001 Ealing bombing).
August 9 - US President George W. Bush announces his support for federal funding of limited research on embryonic stem cells.
August 21 - NATO decides to send a peace-keeping force to the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.
August 21 - The Red Cross announces that a famine is striking Tajikistan, and calls for international financial aid for Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
August 24 - Air Transat Flight 236 runs out of fuel over the Atlantic Ocean (en route to Lisbon from Toronto) and makes an emergency landing in the Azores.
September 9 - Ahmed Shah Massoud, leader of the Northern Alliance, is assassinated in Afghanistan.
September 12 - Ansett Australia, Australia's first commercial interstate airline, collapses due to increased strain on the international airline industry leaving 10000 people unemployed.
September 13 - Civilian aircraft traffic resumes in the U.S. after the September 11, 2001 attacks.
September 14 - Historic National Prayer Service held at Washington National Cathedral for victims of the September 11 attacks. A similar service is held in Canada on Parliament Hill, the largest vigil ever held in the nation's capital.
September 18 - First mailing of anthrax letters from Trenton, New Jersey in the 2001 anthrax attacks.
September 20 - In an address to a joint session of Congress and the American people, U.S. President George W. Bush declares a "war on terror".
September 21 - Deep Space 1 flies within 2,200 km of Comet Borrelly.
September 21 - AZF chemical plant explodes in Toulouse, France, killing 29 people
September 21 - University of Roorkee, becomes India's 7th Indian Institute of Technology, rechristened as IIT Roorkee
September 29 - The Syracuse Herald-Journal, a U.S. newspaper dating back to 1839, ceases publication.
October 2 - NATO backs US military strikes following 9/11.
October 2 - Swissair liquadates and the airline was replaced by SWISS.
October 4 - NATO confirms invocation of Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty.
October 4 - Siberia Airlines Flight 1812: a Sibir Airlines Tupolev TU-154 crashes into the Black Sea after being struck by an errant Ukrainian S-200 missile. 78 people are killed.
October 5 - Robert Stevens becomes the first victim in the 2001 anthrax attacks.
October 5 - Tom Ridge resigns as Governor of Pennsylvania to become President Bush's Homeland Security Advisor.
October 7 - The U.S. invasion of Afghanistan starts with an air assault and covert operations on the ground.
October 8 - A twin engine Cessna and Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) jetliner collide in heavy fog during takeoff from Milan, Italy killing 118.
October 8 - U.S. President George W. Bush announces the establishment of the Office of Homeland Security.
October 9 - Second mailing of anthrax letters from Trenton, New Jersey in the 2001 anthrax attack.
October 11 - The Polaroid Corporation files for federal bankruptcy protection.
October 15 - NASA's Galileo spacecraft passes within 112 miles of Jupiter's moon Io.
October 19 - SIEV-X, an Indonesian fishing boat en-route to Christmas Island, carrying over 400 asylum seekers, sank in international waters with the loss of 353 people.
October 23 - The Provisional Irish Republican Army of Northern Ireland commences disarmament after peace talks.
October 26 - The United States passes the USA PATRIOT Act into law.
November 7 - The supersonic commercial aircraft Concorde resumes flying after a 15-month hiatus.
November 11 - Journalists Pierre Billaud, Johanne Sutton and Volker Handloik are killed in Afghanistan during an attack on the convoy they were traveling on top of.
November 12 - In New York City, American Airlines Flight 587, an Airbus A300 on its way to the Dominican Republic, crashes minutes after takeoff from John F. Kennedy International Airport, killing all 260 on board and five on the ground.
November 12 - 2001 Attack on Afghanistan: Taliban forces abandon Kabul, Afghanistan, ahead of advancing Afghan Northern Alliance troops.
November 13 - Doha Round: The World Trade Organization ends a four-day ministerial conference in Doha, Qatar.
November 13 - War on Terrorism: In the first such act since World War II, US President George W. Bush signs an executive order allowing military tribunals against foreigners suspected of connections to terrorist acts or planned acts on the United States.
November 14 - War in Afghanistan: Afghan Northern Alliance fighters takeover the capital Kabul.
November 20 - In Washington, D.C., U.S. President George W. Bush dedicates the United States Department of Justice headquarters building as the Robert F. Kennedy Justice Building, honoring the late Robert F. Kennedy on what would have been his 76th birthday.
November 23 - Convention on Cybercrime is signed in Budapest, Hungary.
November 27 - A hydrogen atmosphere is discovered on the extrasolar planet Osiris by the Hubble Space Telescope, the first atmosphere detected on an extrasolar planet.
December 1 - Captain Bill Compton brings Trans World Airlines Flight 220, an MD-83, into St. Louis International Airport bringing to an end 76 years of TWA operations following TWA’s purchase by American Airlines.
December 2 - Enron files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
December 6 - The Canadian province of Newfoundland is renamed Newfoundland and Labrador.
December 11 - The People's Republic of China joins the World Trade Organization.
December 13 - the Indian Parliament Sansad is attacked by terrorists. 15 people are killed, including all the terrorists.
December 15 - The Leaning Tower of Pisa reopens after 11 years and $27,000,000 to fortify it, without fixing its famous lean.
December 19 - A record high barometric pressure of 1085.6 hPa (32.06 inHg) is recorded at Tosontsengel, Khövsgöl Province, Mongolia.
December 19 - Argentine economic crisis: December 2001 riots
December 20 - Argentine economic crisis: President of Argentina Fernando de la Rúa is forced out of office.
December 22 - Burhanuddin Rabbani, political leader of the Afghan Northern Alliance, hands over power in Afghanistan to the interim government headed by President Hamid Karzai.
December 22 - Richard Reid attempts to destroy a passenger airliner by igniting explosives hidden in his shoes aboard American Airlines Flight 63.
December 27 - The People's Republic of China is granted permanent normal trade relations with the United States.
December 29 - Mesa Redonda shopping center fire, Lima, Peru, at least 291 killed.