2010 (MMX) was a common year starting on Friday (dominical letter C) of the Gregorian calendar, the 2010th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the tenth year of the 3rd millennium, the tenth year of the 21st century, and the first year of the 2010s decade.
2010 was designated as:
- International Year of Biodiversity
- International Year of Youth
- 2010 European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion
- International Year for the Rapprochement of Cultures
There is a debate among experts and the general public on how to pronounce specific years of the twenty-first century in English. The year 2010 is pronounced either "two thousand (and) ten", or "twenty-ten". 2010 was the first year to have a wide variation in pronunciation, as the years 2000 to 2009 were generally pronounced "two thousand (and) one, two, three, etc." as opposed to the less common "twenty-oh-_".
- January 1 – A suicide blast in the village of Shah Hasan Khel, Pakistan, kills at least 105 people and injures over 100.
- January 3 – The United States and the United Kingdom close their embassies in Yemen due to the ongoing security threat by Al-Qaeda.
- January 4 – The tallest man-made structure to date, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, is officially opened.
- January 8 – The Togo national football team is involved in an attack in Cabinda Province, Angola, and as a result withdraws from the Africa Cup of Nations. The attack was perpetrated by the FLEC, their first after the Angolan Civil War.
- January 12 – A 7.0-magnitude earthquake occurs in Haiti, devastating the nation's capital, Port-au-Prince. With a confirmed death toll over 316,000, it is the seventh deadliest on record.
- January 15
- January 25 – Ethiopian Airlines Flight 409 crashes into the Mediterranean shortly after take-off from Beirut–Rafic Hariri International Airport, killing all 90 people on board.
- February 3 – The sculpture L'Homme qui marche I by Alberto Giacometti sells in London for £65 million (US$103.7 million), setting a new world record for a work of art sold at auction.
- February 12–28 – The 2010 Winter Olympics are held in Vancouver and Whistler, Canada.
- February 18 – The President of Niger, Mamadou Tandja, is overthrown after a group of soldiers storms the presidential palace and form a ruling junta, the Supreme Council for the Restoration of Democracy headed by chef d'escadron Salou Djibo.
- February 27 – An 8.8-magnitude earthquake occurs in Chile, triggering a tsunami over the Pacific and killing at least 525. The earthquake is one of the largest in recorded history.
- March 16 – The Kasubi Tombs, Uganda's only cultural World Heritage Site, are destroyed by fire.
- March 26 – The ROKS Cheonan, a South Korean Navy ship carrying 104 personnel, sinks off the country's west coast, killing 46. In May, an independent investigation blames North Korea, which denies the allegations.
- April 7 – Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev flees Bishkek amid fierce rioting, sparking a sociopolitical crisis. Former foreign minister Roza Otunbayeva is placed at the head of an interim government as the opposition seizes control.
- April 10 – The President of Poland, Lech Kaczyński, is among 96 killed when their aeroplane crashes in Smolensk, western Russia while on their way to commemorate the Soviet Katyn massacre.
- April 14 – Volcanic ash from one of several eruptions beneath Mount Eyjafjallajökull, an ice cap in Iceland, begins to disrupt air traffic across northern and western Europe.
- April 20 – The Deepwater Horizon oil drilling platform explodes in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 workers. The resulting Horizon oil spill, one of the largest in history, spreads for several months, damaging the waters and the United States coastline, and prompting international debate and doubt about the practise and procedures of offshore drilling.
- April 27 – Standard & Poor's downgrades Greece's sovereign credit rating to junk 4 days after the activation of a €45-billion EU–IMF bailout, triggering the decline of stock markets worldwide and of the euro's value, and furthering a European sovereign debt crisis.
- May 2 – The eurozone and the International Monetary Fund agree to a €110 billion bailout package for Greece. The package involves sharp Greek austerity measures.
- May 4 – Nude, Green Leaves and Bust by Pablo Picasso sells in New York for US$106.5 million, setting another new world record for a work of art sold at auction.
- May 7
- May 10 – A series of attacks in Iraq kill over 114 people and injure 350.
- May 12 – Afriqiyah Airways Flight 771 crashes at runway at Tripoli International Airport in Libya, killing 103 of the 104 people on board.
- May 19 – Protests in Bangkok, Thailand, end with a bloody military crackdown, killing 91 and injuring more than 2,100.
- May 20
- May 22 – Air India Express Flight 812 overshoots the runway at Mangalore International Airport in India, killing 158 and leaving 8 survivors.
- May 31 – Nine activists are killed in a clash with soldiers when Israeli Navy forces raid and capture a flotilla of ships attempting to break the Gaza blockade.
- June 10–14 – Ethnic riots in Kyrgyzstan between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks result in the deaths of hundreds.
- June 11 – July 11 – The 2010 FIFA World Cup is held in South Africa, and is won by Spain, with the runner-up being the Netherlands.
- July 8 – The first 24-hour flight by a solar-powered plane is completed by the Solar Impulse.
- July 21 – Slovenia becomes the 32nd member of the OECD.
- July 25 – WikiLeaks, an online publisher of anonymous, covert, and classified material, leaks to the public over 90,000 internal reports about the United States-led involvement in the War in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2010.
- July 29 – Heavy monsoon rains begin to cause widespread flooding (pictured) in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. Over 1,600 are killed, and more than one million are displaced by the floods.
- August 10 – The World Health Organization declares the H1N1 influenza pandemic over, saying worldwide flu activity has returned to typical seasonal patterns.
- September 4 – A 7.1 magnitude earthquake rocks Christchurch, New Zealand causing large amounts of damage but no direct fatalities. It is the first in a series of earthquakes between 2010 and 2012 that resulted in the deaths of 187 people and over $40 billion worth of damage. Seismologists noted that the earthquake sequence was highly unusual, and likely to never happen again anywhere else in the world.
- September 7 – Israel becomes the 33rd member of the OECD.
- October 10 – The Netherlands Antilles are dissolved, with the islands being split up and given a new constitutional status.
- October 22 – The International Space Station surpasses the record for the longest continuous human occupation of space, having been continuously inhabited after November 2, 2000 (3641 days).
- October 23 – In preparation for the Seoul summit, finance ministers of the G-20 agree to reform the International Monetary Fund and shift six percent of the voting shares to developing nations and countries with emerging markets.
- October 25 – An earthquake and consequent tsunami off the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia, kills over 400 people and leaves hundreds missing.
- October 26 – December: Repeated eruptions of Mount Merapi volcano in Central Java, Indonesia, and accompanying pyroclastic flows of scalding gas, pumice, and volcanic ash descending the erupting volcano kill 300 people and force hundreds of thousands of residents to evacuate.
- November 4 – Aero Caribbean Flight 883 crashes in central Cuba, killing all 68 people on board.
- November 11–12 – The G-20 summit is held in Seoul, South Korea. Korea becomes the first non-G8 nation to host a G-20 leaders summit.
- November 13 – Burmese opposition politician Aung San Suu Kyi is released from her house arrest after being incarcerated after 1989.
- November 17 – Researchers at CERN trap 38 antihydrogen atoms for a sixth of a second, marking the first time in history that humans have trapped antimatter.
- November 20 – Participants of the 2010 NATO Lisbon summit issue the Lisbon Summit Declaration.
- November 21 – Eurozone countries agree to a rescue package for the Republic of Ireland from the European Financial Stability Facility in response to the country's financial crisis.
- November 23 – North Korea shells Yeonpyeong Island, prompting a military response by South Korea. The incident causes an escalation of tension on the Korean Peninsula and prompts widespread international condemnation. The United Nations declares it to be one of the most serious incidents after the end of the Korean War.
- November 28 – WikiLeaks releases a collection of more than 250,000 American diplomatic cables, including 100,000 marked "secret" or "confidential".
- November 29 – The European Union agree to an €85 billion rescue deal for Ireland from the European Financial Stability Facility, the International Monetary Fund and bilateral loans from the United Kingdom, Denmark and Sweden.
- November 29 – December 10 – The 2010 United Nations Climate Change Conference is held in Cancún, Mexico. Also referred to as the sixteenth Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 16), it serves too as the sixth meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP 6).
- December 9 – Estonia becomes the 34th member of the OECD.
- December 18 – The Arab Spring begins.
- December 21 – The first total lunar eclipse to occur on the day of the Northern winter solstice and Southern summer solstice after 1638 takes place.
- January 4
- January 9 – Armand Razafindratandra, Malagasy cardinal (b. 1925)
- January 11
- January 12 – Zilda Arns, Brazilian paediatrician and aid worker (b. 1934)
- January 13 – Teddy Pendergrass, African-American R&B and soul singer (b. 1950)
- January 15 – Marshall Warren Nirenberg, American biologist and Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1927)
- January 17
- January 18 – Kate McGarrigle, Canadian folk singer (b. 1946)
- January 19 – Panajot Pano, Albanian footballer (b. 1939)
- January 22
- January 25 – Ali Hassan al-Majid, Iraqi politician and military commander (b. 1941)
- January 27
- February 1 – Steingrímur Hermannsson, nineteenth Prime Minister of Iceland (b. 1928)
- February 6 – John Dankworth, British jazz musician and composer (b. 1927)
- February 7 – André Kolingba, fourth President of the Central African Republic (b. 1936)
- February 10 – Charlie Wilson, American politician (b. 1933)
- February 11 – Alexander McQueen, British fashion designer (b. 1969)
- February 14 – Dick Francis, British author and jockey (b. 1920)
- February 17 – Kathryn Grayson, American singer (b. 1922)
- February 18 – Ariel Ramírez, Argentine composer (b. 1921)
- February 20 – Alexander Haig, 59th United States Secretary of State (b. 1924)
- February 26 – Jun Seba, Japanese hip hop producer, DJ (b. 1974)
- March 3 – Michael Foot, British politician (b. 1913)
- March 4 – Vladislav Ardzinba, Soviet-born politician (b. 1945)
- March 10
- March 12 – Miguel Delibes, Spanish author and journalist (b. 1920)
- March 14 – Peter Graves, American actor (b. 1926)
- March 20 – Girija Prasad Koirala, Nepalese politician (b. 1925)
- March 21 – Wolfgang Wagner, German festival director (b. 1919)
- March 22
- March 24 – Robert Culp, American actor, screenwriter and director (b. 1930)
- March 27 – Vasily Smyslov, Soviet-Russian chess grandmaster (b. 1921)
- March 28
- March 30 – Martin Sandberger, German army officer (b. 1911)
- April 1 – John Forsythe, American actor (b. 1918)
- April 3 – Eugène Terre'Blanche, South African politician and white supremacist (b. 1941)
- April 5 – Vitaly Sevastyanov, Soviet cosmonaut (b. 1935)
- April 6 – Corin Redgrave, British actor and political activist (b. 1939)
- April 8
- April 10
- April 14 – Peter Steele, American musician (b. 1962)
- April 16 – Tomáš Špidlík, Czech cardinal (b. 1919)
- April 19 – Guru, American rapper (b. 1966)
- April 21 – Juan Antonio Samaranch, Spanish sports official (b. 1920)
- April 25 – Alan Sillitoe, British writer (b. 1928)
- April 30 – Paul Mayer, German cardinal (b. 1911)
- May 2 – Lynn Redgrave, British actress (b. 1943)
- May 4 – Luigi Poggi, Italian cardinal (b. 1917)
- May 5
- May 8 – Andor Lilienthal, Hungarian chess grandmaster (b. 1911)
- May 9 – Lena Horne, American singer and actress (b. 1917)
- May 10 – Frank Frazetta, American artist (b. 1928)
- May 15 – Besian Idrizaj, Austrian footballer (b. 1987)
- May 16
- May 17
- May 18 – Edoardo Sanguineti, Italian writer (b. 1930)
- May 22 – Martin Gardner, American science author (b. 1914)
- May 24
- May 28 – Gary Coleman, American actor, voice artist and comedian (b. 1968)
- May 29 – Dennis Hopper, American actor, filmmaker, photographer and artist (b. 1936)
- May 31 – Louise Bourgeois, French-born American sculptor (b. 1911)
- June 1 – Andrei Voznesensky, Soviet-Russian poet (b. 1933)
- June 2 – Giuseppe Taddei, Italian baritone (b. 1916)
- June 3
- June 9 – Marina Semyonova, Russian ballerina (b. 1908)
- June 10 – Sigmar Polke, German painter and photographer (b. 1941)
- June 14 – Leonid Kizim, Soviet-Ukrainian cosmonaut (b. 1941)
- June 16 – Ronald Neame, British cinematographer, producer and director (b. 1911)
- June 18
- June 19 – Manute Bol, Sudanese basketball player (b. 1962)
- June 23 – Mohammed Mzali, former Prime Minister of Tunisia (b. 1925)
- June 26 – Algirdas Brazauskas, ninth President of Lithuania (b. 1932)
- June 28 – Robert Byrd, American politician (b. 1917)
- July 2 – Beryl Bainbridge, British novelist (b. 1934)
- July 3 – Abu Daoud, Palestinian militia commander (b. 1937)
- July 4 – Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah, Lebanese spiritual leader (b. 1935)
- July 5
- July 12 – Harvey Pekar, American comic book writer (b. 1939)
- July 14 – Charles Mackerras, Australian conductor (b. 1925)
- July 17 – Bernard Giraudeau, French actor and film director (b. 1947)
- July 21 – Luis Corvalán, Chilean politician (b. 1916)
- July 24 – Alex Higgins, Northern Irish snooker player (b. 1949)
- August 5 – Godfrey Binaisa, fifth President of Uganda (b. 1920)
- August 6 – Tony Judt, British historian (b. 1948)
- August 7 – Bruno Cremer, French actor (b. 1929)
- August 8 – Patricia Neal, American actress (b. 1926)
- August 9 – Ted Stevens, American politician (b. 1923)
- August 10 – Antonio Pettigrew, American athlete (b. 1967)
- August 12 – Guido de Marco, sixth President of Malta (b. 1931)
- August 13 – Lance Cade, American professional wrestler (b. 1980)
- August 16 – Nicola Cabibbo, Italian physicist (b. 1935)
- August 17 – Francesco Cossiga, 63rd Prime Minister and eighth President of Italy (b. 1928)
- August 18 – Carlos Hugo of Bourbon-Parma, Spanish aristocrat (b. 1930)
- August 22 – Stjepan Bobek, Yugoslav footballer (b. 1923)
- August 23 – Satoshi Kon, Japanese anime film director (b. 1963)
- August 26
- August 27 – Anton Geesink, Dutch judoka (b. 1934)
- August 28 – Sinan Hasani, tenth President of Yugoslavia (b. 1922)
- August 30
- August 31 – Laurent Fignon, French road bicycle racer (b. 1960)
- September 5 – Shoya Tomizawa, Japanese MotoGP racer (b. 1990)
- September 9 – Bent Larsen, Danish chess grandmaster (b. 1935)
- September 11 – Kevin McCarthy, American actor (b. 1914)
- September 12 – Claude Chabrol, French film director (b. 1930)
- September 22 – Eddie Fisher, American entertainer and singer (b. 1928)
- September 24 – Gennady Yanayev, Soviet politician; mastermind of the 1991 Soviet coup d'état attempt (b. 1937)
- September 26 – Gloria Stuart, American actress (b. 1910)
- September 28 – Arthur Penn, American film director (b. 1922)
- September 29
- September 30 – Stephen J. Cannell, American writer and television producer (b. 1941)
- October 4 – Norman Wisdom, British actor and comedian (b. 1915)
- October 7 – Milka Planinc, former Prime Minister of Yugoslavia (b. 1924)
- October 9 – Maurice Allais, French Nobel economist (b. 1911)
- October 10
- October 11 – Joan Sutherland, Australian opera singer (b. 1926)
- October 14 – Benoît Mandelbrot, French-American mathematician (b. 1924)
- October 16 – Barbara Billingsley, American actress (b. 1915)
- October 19 – Tom Bosley, American actor (b. 1927)
- October 20 – Farooq Leghari, ninth President of Pakistan (b. 1940)
- October 23 – David Thompson, sixth Prime Minister of Barbados (b. 1961)
- October 25 – Gregory Isaacs, Jamaican musician (b. 1951)
- October 27 – Néstor Kirchner, 54th President of Argentina (b. 1950)
- October 28 – Jonathan Motzfeldt, first Prime Minister of Greenland (b. 1938)
- October 30 – Harry Mulisch, Dutch writer (b. 1927)
- November 2 – Rudolf Barshai, Soviet-Russian conductor and violist (b. 1924)
- November 3 – Viktor Chernomyrdin, thirty-first Prime Minister of Russia (b. 1938)
- November 5
- November 10 – Dino De Laurentiis, Italian film producer (b. 1919)
- November 12 – Henryk Górecki, Polish composer (b. 1933)
- November 13 – Luis García Berlanga, Spanish film director (b. 1921)
- November 17 – Isabelle Caro, French model and actress (b. 1980)
- November 27 – Irvin Kershner, American film director (b. 1923)
- November 28 – Leslie Nielsen, Canadian-American actor (b. 1926)
- November 29
- December 10 – John B. Fenn, American Nobel chemist (b. 1917)
- December 12 – Tom Walkinshaw, British racing car driver and team owner (b. 1946)
- December 13 – Richard Holbrooke, American diplomat (b. 1941)
- December 15 – Blake Edwards, American film director (b. 1922)
- December 17 – Captain Beefheart, American musician (b. 1941)
- December 21 – Enzo Bearzot, Italian footballer and coach (b. 1927)
- December 25 – Carlos Andrés Pérez, 55th President of Venezuela (b. 1922)
- December 26
- December 30
- Chemistry – Richard F. Heck, Ei-ichi Negishi and Akira Suzuki
- Economics – Peter A. Diamond, Dale T. Mortensen and Christopher A. Pissarides
- Literature – Mario Vargas Llosa
- Peace – Liu Xiaobo
- Physics – Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov
- Physiology or Medicine – Robert G. Edwards