“It wasn’t all bad.” We need to remind one another of that fact as 2016 comes to an end. When favorite actors and actresses are passing away at an alarming rate. It’s hard to remember that there was a lot of good news that came out of this year. But your friends at Gildshire Magazines wanted to bring back some of the good that transpired this year.
January: On the 16th of January, Taiwan elected its first female President. Democratic Progressive Party nominee Tsai Ing-wen came in first with 56.1% of the vote. She defeated Kuomintang's Eric Chu. and James Soong of the People First Party. Chu and Soong received 31% and 13% of the vote respectively. The new President is the first unmarried leader of Taiwan in the nation’s history.
February: A Syrian cease-fire was announced for Feb. 22. Government-led forces temporarily ended their siege of rebel-held towns, so humanitarian aid could be delivered. Those cities had been cut off from delivery of food and medicine.
March: President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama arrived in Havana, Cuba Monday, March 21. Laying bare a half-century of tensions, President Obama met with Cuban President Raul Castro. During a joint news conference, they discussed human rights and the long-standing U.S. economic embargo. It was an important step toward the normalization of relations between the Western Hemisphere neighbors.
April: In another visit in the spirit of reconciliation, Secretary of State John Kerry visited Hiroshima Monday, April 11. Kerry and Japan's Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida laid wreaths at the cenotaph at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. Kerry was the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit the site.
May: Two Nigerian girls, abducted by Boko Haram in 2014, were found in a forest May 18. In April 2014, the group kidnapped about 280 girls from a school in the northeast with the intention of making them sex slaves. All of the girls were released later in the year.
June: In a reversal of a long-standing policy, the U.S. Military opened its ranks to transgendered individuals June 30. Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced the policy change. Transgendered individuals already serving in the military will be able to come out, and also receive proper medical care.