As 2014 draws to a close we look back at the highs and lows; the memorable moments that moved us this past year.
A reveler floats in the ocean while watching fireworks explode minutes after midnight along Copacabana Beach during New Year's celebrations in Rio de Janeiro, Jan. 1.
**Some photos in this gallery contain scenes of injury or death
Ice builds up along Lake Michigan at North Avenue Beach as temperatures dipped well below zero in Chicago, Jan. 6.
Chicago hit a record low of -16 degrees Fahrenheit as a polar air mass brought the coldest temperatures in about two decades into the city.
White whales and their trainers present a show for visitors at Harbin Pole Aquarium in Harbin, China, Jan. 7.
Mount Sinabung spews volcanic ash and lava near Karo, North Sumatra in Indonesia, Jan 9.
The Indonesian volcano that erupted relentlessly for months shot volcanic ash into the air 30 times on Jan. 4, forcing further evacuations with more than 20,000 people displaced.
Petty Officer Andrew Boote holds his son Max Boote, 3, after disembarking HMS Illustrious in Portsmouth Harbor in Portmouth, England, Jan. 10.
The ship returned with her 650 crew after a five month deployment to South East Asia delivering aid relief to victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.
A seagull flies past the side of the cruise ship Costa Concordia during the "parbuckling" operation to rotate the ship upright outside Giglio harbor in Italy, Jan 12.
The Costa Concordia capsized on the Italian island of Giglio two years ago killing 32 people.
A man takes part in the annual 'No Pants Subway Ride' in New York City, Jan. 12.
Health officers in full protective gear wait to cross a road near a wholesale poultry market in Hong Kong, Jan. 28.
Hong Kong culled 20,000 chickens and suspended imports of fresh poultry from mainland China for 21 days after the discovery of the H7N9 bird flu virus in a batch of live chicken from the southern province of Guangdong.
A huge boulder is seen after it missed a farm house by less than a meter (3.2 feet), destroying the barn, and stopped in the vineyard, during a landslide in Ronchi di Termeno, Northern Italy, Jan. 23.
Indian Border Security Force (BSF) Dog Squad personnel interact with a pair of dogs before a march during Republic Day celebrations in Jammu, in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, Jan. 26.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (L) grabs the arm of House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) as President Barack Obama delivers his State of the Union address in front of the U.S. Congress, on Capitol Hill, Jan. 28.
Residents wait in line to receive food aid distributed in the Yarmouk refugee camp in Damascus, Syria, January, 31.
An estimated 18,000 people were besieged inside the camp as the conflict in Syria continued.
Four out of five Olympic rings are seen lit up during the opening ceremony of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, Feb. 7.
The incomplete Olympic symbol just hung there before disappearing completely. It was the talking point of the opening ceremony, and became one of the most memorable images of the Sochi Olympic Games.
People look on as a veterinarian prepares to dismember the giraffe Marius after it was killed in Copenhagen Zoo, to feed it to lions, Feb. 9.
The Copenhagen Zoo said it killed the 18-month-old animal, in line with anti-inbreeding rules, to ensure a healthy giraffe population. The giraffe was shot in the head and then cut apart in view of children. The zoo's plans sparked an outcry from animal rights activists.
A priest speaks through a megaphone to riot police and anti-government protesters at the site of clashes in Kiev, Ukraine, Feb. 12.
A flock of starlings fly over an agricultural field in the shape of a heart near the southern Israeli city of Netivot, Feb. 12.
The starlings migrate from central and Eastern Europe to spend the winter in Israel.
Belarus' Anton Kushnir competes during the men's freestyle skiing aerials qualification round at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games in Rosa Khutor, Feb. 17.
An anti-government protester stands in front of Thai soldiers guarding a Defence Ministry compound, serving as a temporary office for Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, in north Bangkok, Feb. 19.
Protesters seeking to oust Yingluck rallied at her temporary office, but the premier stayed away from the potential flashpoint a day after five people were killed in gunbattles in Bangkok.
Oscar award show host, Ellen DeGeneres poses with actors (front row from left), Jared Leto, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Ellen DeGeneres, Bradley Cooper, Peter Nyong'o Jr., and, (second row from left), Channing Tatum, Julia Roberts, Kevin Spacey, Brad Pitt, Lupita Nyong'o and Angelina Jolie for a selfie that Twitter said was seen by 37 million people worldwide when it was first shared on the social media site from the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles, March 2.
A woman looks through a damaged entrance door as pro-Russian demonstrators hold a rally outside the regional government building in Donetsk, Ukraine, March 3.
Pro-Russian demonstrators occupied the first floor of the regional government building in east Ukraine's city of Donetsk. The 11-story building was flying the Russian flag, rather than the Ukrainian flag, for three days, with demonstrators carrying Russian flags staging rallies outside.
Kermit the Frog (L) and Miss Piggy arrive at the world premiere of Disney's "Muppets Most Wanted" at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood, Calif., March 11.
French President Francois Hollande speaks in a bar after voting in the first round in the French mayoral elections in Tulle, France, March 23.
A Balinese man throws a burned coconut husk during the Mesabatan Api ritual a head of Nyepi Day in Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia, March 30.
Mesabatan Api is held annually a day before the Nyepi Day of Silence, symbolizing the purification of the universe and human body through fire. Nyepi is a Hindu celebration observed every new year according to the Balinese calendar.
The shadow of a Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P3 Orion maritime search aircraft seen on low-level clouds as it flies over the southern Indian Ocean looking for missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370, March 31.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said the hunt for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 had no time limit, despite the failure of an international operation to find any sign of the plane. The fate of the Boeing 777 carrying 239 people is still a mystery.
General Motors CEO Mary Barra arrives to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., April 1.
U.S. lawmakers, seeking to establish who is to blame for at least 13 auto-related deaths over the past decade, challenged Barra over the automaker's slow response to defective ignition switches in its cars. GM issued 45 recalls in 2014, involving nearly 28 million cars worldwide and 24.6 million in the U.S.
Men rescue a boy from under the rubble created by what activists said were explosive barrels dropped by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar Al-Assad in the Al-Shaar neighborhood of Aleppo, Syria, Apr. 6.
A penitent walks past a woman on his way to a church before taking part in the procession of "La Borriquita" brotherhood on Palm Sunday in the Andalusian capital of Seville, southern Spain, Apr. 13.
A child looks out at hundreds of police officers during the funeral for fallen New York Police Department (NYPD) officer Dennis Guerra who died the previous week from injuries suffered in an arson blaze at a Coney Island public housing apartment building, outside St. Rose of Lima Church in the Far Rockaway neighborhood of Queens in New York City, Apr. 14.
The South Korean ferry "Sewol" (L) is seen sinking in the sea off Jindo, as lighting flares are released for a night search, Apr. 16.
The ferry capsized carrying 476 people, mostly secondary school students from Danwon High School. In all, 304 passengers died in the disaster.
Penitent Danilo Ramos grimaces in pain as he is nailed to a wooden cross during the reenactment of the death of Jesus Christ on Good Friday in San Fernando, Pampanga in northern Philippines, Apr. 18.
A veteran wearing service medals bows his head during a remembrance service on ANZAC Day in central Sydney, Apr. 25.
Australia and New Zealand marked the 99th anniversary of the first major military action involving Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War. ANZAC is an acronym for Australia and New Zealand Army Corps.
Central African Republic
A woman lies on the road dying from a gunshot wound to the head close to the village of Dekoa after the armed peacekeeping convoy from the African Union operation in the Central African Republic (MISCA) she was traveling in came under attack by anti-Balaka militiamen, traveling towards the towns of Kabo and Sido in the north on the border with Chad, Apr. 28.
A miner receives a kiss from his father (R) after a mine explosion in Manisa, Turkey, May 13.
In total, 301 people were killed in what was the worst mine disaster in Turkey's history when an explosion caused an underground fire.
Expedition 39 Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA is carried in a chair to a medical tent just minutes after he and Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), center, and Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin of Roscosmos landed in their Soyuz TMA-11M near Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan, May 14.
Wakata, Tyurin and Mastracchio returned to Earth after more than six months onboard the International Space Station where they served as members of the Expedition 38 and 39 crews.
A young South African student at a primary school in Durban writes a message on a blackboard during a "BringBackOurGirls" school project calling for the immediate release of over 200 abducted Nigerian school girls, May 15, 2014.
The #BringBackOurGirls campaign went viral on social media to protest the abduction of over 200 girls by members of the Islamist Boko Haram group in mid-April and to call for their liberation.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai (R) walks away after shaking hands with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping before the opening ceremony in the Expo Center during the fourth Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) summit in Shanghai, May 21.
He Liang rides his home-made suitcase vehicle along a street in Changsha, China, May 28.
He spent 10 years modifying the suitcase into a motor-driven vehicle. The suitcase has a top speed of up to 20km/hr (12.4 miles) and the power capacity to travel up to 50-60km (31-37 miles) after one charge.
A black bear lies on a hammock at a residential back yard in Daytona Beach, Florida early evening, May 30.
The bear used the hammock for more than 15 minutes before being startled when the backyard lights were turned on according to the photographer.
Singer Rihanna arrives for the Council of Fashion Designers of America Awards (CFDA) at Lincoln Center in New York City, June 2.
Sikhs wield swords during their clash inside the complex of the holy Sikh shrine, the Golden Temple, in the northern Indian city of Amritsar June 6.
Sikhs clashed inside the compound of their religion's holiest shrine on the 30th anniversary of a controversial raid by Indian security forces that flushed out separatist militants holed up in the temple.
A man swims in the algae-covered Han River in Wuhan, Hubei province in China, June 11.
An African migrant sits on top of a border fence covered in razor wire between Morocco and Spain's north African enclave of Melilla, during an attempt to cross into Spanish territory, June 14.
According to local authorities, around 400 migrants stormed the border in the early hours and five managed to cross the fence, but were eventually caught and expelled to Morocco.
Smoke rises from a house days after part of the ground it was resting on collapsed into Lake Whitney, Texas, June 13.
A supporter of Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah holds an Afghan flag after an election campaign rally in Paghman district of Kabul June 9.
The second round of Afghanistan's presidential election took place June 14.
Former government Director of Communications and News of The World editor Andy Coulson departs the Old Bailey in London, June 25.
Coulson was found guilty of conspiracy to hack phones. The charges of phone hacking were brought by numerous celebrities and members of the public against "News of the World" and forced the closure of the newspaper.
GoPro Inc.'s founder and CEO Nick Woodman holds a GoPro camera in his mouth as he celebrates GoPro Inc.'s IPO at the Nasdaq Market Site in New York City, June 26.
Wearable sports camera maker GoPro Inc.'s initial public offering valued the company at up to $2.96 billion.
Lightning strikes One World Trade Center in Manhattan as the sun sets behind the city after a summer storm in New York July 2.
Revellers run with Torrestrella's fighting bulls along the Calle Estafeta during the second day of the San Fermin Running Of The Bulls festival in Pamplona, Spain, July 7.
The annual Fiesta de San Fermin, made famous by the 1926 novel of US writer Ernest Hemingway 'The Sun Also Rises', involves the running of the bulls through the historic heart of Pamplona.
Tariq Khdeir is greeted by his mother after being released from jail in Jerusalem, July 6.
The beating of Khdeir, a 15-year-old American of Palestinian descent, by Israeli police during a violent protest in East Jerusalem drew U.S. concern. Tariq Khdeir from Tampa, Florida, is a cousin of 16-year-old Palestinian Mohammed Abu Khudair, who was abducted and killed in July in a suspected revenge attack for the killing of three Israeli youths by Palestinian militants in the occupied West Bank.
Germany's Mario Goetze (L) and teammate Thomas Mueller celebrate after Goetze scored a goal during extra time in their 2014 World Cup final against Argentina at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro July 13.
Germany defeated Argentina in the third final between the two countries, a World Cup record. This was Germany's fourth World Cup title.
A group of Ukrainian miners assist rescue workers in the search for bodies of victims in a wheat field at the site of the crash of Malaysian Flight 17 carrying 298 people from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur in Grabove, in rebel-held east Ukraine, July 18.
All onboard were killed. Pro-Russian separatists in the region and officials in Kiev blamed each other for the crash, after the plane was apparently hit by a surface-to-air missile.
A flamingo and flamingo chicks are seen in a corral before being tagged at dawn at the Fuente de Piedra Natural Reserve, near Malaga, southern Spain, July 19.
Around 600 flamingos were tagged and measured before being placed in the lagoon, one of the largest colonies of flamingos in Europe, according to authorities at the reserve.
Three men found guilty by a Somali military court of killing civilians and masterminding a recent attack on the presidential palace stand tied to poles shortly before they were executed by a firing squad in the capital Mogadishu Aug.3.
The three were also members of the militant group Al Shabaab.
Fireworks streak in front of the supermoon outside the town of Mosta, celebrating the feast of its patron saint, in central Malta, Aug. 10.
A supermoon occurs when the moon is closest to the Earth in its orbit, making it appear much larger and brighter than usual.
Displaced people from the minority Yazidi sect, fleeing violence from forces loyal to the ISIS in Sinjar town, walk towards the Syrian border, on the outskirts of Sinjar mountain, near the Syrian border town of Elierbeh of Al-Hasakah Governorate Aug. 11
ISIS militants killed at least 500 members of Iraq's Yazidi ethnic minority during their offensive in the north, according to Iraq's human rights minister.
Police force protesters from the business district into nearby neighborhoods in Ferguson, Missouri, Aug. 11.
Police responded with tear gas and rubber bullets as residents and their supporters protested the shooting by police of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown, who was killed in this suburban St. Louis community.
Visitors run away as waves caused by a tidal bore surge past a barrier on the banks of Qiantang River, in Hangzhou, China, Aug. 13.
Umu Fambulle stands over her husband Ibrahim after he staggered and fell, knocking him unconscious, in an Ebola ward in Monrovia, Liberia, Aug.15.
The Ebola epidemic has killed more than 7,400 people in West African this year.
A man protesting the killing of Michael Brown by police is doused with milk and sprayed with mist after being hit by an eye irritant from security forces in Ferguson, Missouri, Aug. 20.
Frankie Dettori (L) and Clare Balding (R) take part in the 'Ice Bucket Challenge' at York racecourse in York, England, Aug 22.
'The Ice Bucket Challenge' went viral worldwide this year raising 94 million dollars for the ALS Association.
A man slips off the "gostra", a pole covered in grease, during the week-long celebrations for the religious feast of St Julian, patron of the town of St Julian's, outside Valletta, Italy, Aug. 24.
Video still of journalist James Foley, 40, who was captured while working in Syria Nov. 22, 2012, just before the man in black with ISIS beheaded him in a video as retaliation for American airstrikes, Aug, 12.
In 2014, an unknown number of Syrians, several Lebanese soldiers, at least 10 Kurds, two American journalists, one American and two British aid workers were beheaded by ISIS.
A riot policeman is set on fire by a molotov cocktail thrown by a small group of anti-government protesters during clashes in San Cristobal, Venezuela, Aug. 25.
The demonstrators protested against rising food prices, the lack of safety, the shortage of goods and the closure of the border with Colombia, among other things.
Michael Brown Sr., yells out as his son's casket is lowered into the ground at St. Peter's Cemetery in St. Louis, Missouri, Aug.25.
Family, politicians and activists gathered for the funeral following weeks of unrest with at times violent protests spawning headlines around the world focusing attention on racial issues in the U.S.
Jiejin Qiu, who is six months pregnant with her first baby, poses underwater during a photo shoot at a local wedding photo studio in Shanghai, Sept. 5.
Emma Sulkowicz, a senior visual arts student at Columbia University, carries a mattress Sept. 5 in protest of the university's lack of action after she reported being raped during her sophomore year, in New York City.
Sulkowicz said she is committed to carrying the mattress everywhere she goes until the university expels the rapist or he leaves. The protest is also doubling as her senior thesis project.
Colleges and universities in the U.S. came under increasing national scrutiny in 2014 for how they handle sexual assault allegations.
A boy collects items thrown by devotees as religious offerings next to idols of the Hindu elephant god Ganesh, the deity of prosperity, a day after they were immersed in the waters of the Sabarmati River in the western Indian city of Ahmedabad Sept. 9.
Olympic and paralympic track star Oscar Pistorius reacts as he listens to Judge Thokozile Masipa's judgment at the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria, Sept. 11.
A South African judge cleared Oscar Pistorius of all murder charges in the death of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, saying prosecutors had failed to prove the track star intended to kill his girlfriend or an imagined intruder on Valentine's Day last year.
Kanye West performs live for fans at Qantas Credit Union Arena in Sydney, Sept. 12.
A firefighter monitors the King fire as it burns through brush in Fresh Pond, Calif., Sept. 17.
The fire threatened over 1,600 homes in the forested area about an hour east of Sacramento and consumed over 18,544 acres.
A school official takes a pupil's temperature using an infrared digital laser thermometer in front of the school premises, as private schools reopened, in Lagos Sept. 22.
Nigeria and Senegal, two of the five countries affected by the world's worst ever Ebola outbreak, are managing to halt the spread of the disease, according to the World Health Organization.
Derek Jeter #2 of the New York Yankees celebrates after a game winning RBI hit in the ninth inning against the Baltimore Orioles in his last game before retirement at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City, Sept. 25.
A cradle left behind by Syrian Kurdish refugees lies at the Turkish-Syrian border near Suruc, Sept. 27.
The crossing point along the Turkish-Syrian border frontier was normally a hive of activity, with wailing children and families desperately trying to carry whatever they could manage across the dusty terrain.
A protester (C) raises his umbrellas in front of tear gas fired by riot police to disperse protesters blocking the main street to the Central District outside government headquarters in Hong Kong, Sept. 28.
The protests became known as the 'Umbrella Revolution'.
An Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights) is seen over a mountain camp north of the Arctic Circle, near the village of Mestervik, Norway late Sept. 30.
Onboard Team Vestas Wind are Maciel Cicchetti driving, Tony Rae on mainsheet and Nicolai Sehestead on trim as the boat surfs at 25 knts on the morning of Day 8, leg 1, between Alicante, Spain and Cape Town, South Africa, Oct 18.
The Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 is the 12th running of this ocean marathon. Starting from Alicante in Spain on Oct. 11 the route, spanning some 39,379 nautical miles, visits 11 ports in 11 countries (Spain, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, China, New Zealand, Brazil, United States, Portugal, France, the Netherlands and Sweden) over nine months.
An explosion rocks the Syrian city of Kobane during a reported suicide car bomb attack by ISIS militants on a People's Protection Unit (YPG) position in the city center, as seen from the outskirts of Suruc, on the Turkey-Syria border, Oct. 20.
The sun rises over the edge of the earth in an image taken from the International Space Station by NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman Oct. 29.
Sheriff's deputies inspect the wreckage from the Virgin Galactic SpaceShip 2 in a desert field North of Mojave, Calif., Nov. 2.
The Virgin Galactic SpaceShip 2, being developed by Richard Branson as a commercial spacecraft, crashed killing one and injuring another.
Tightrope walker Nik Wallenda starts out on his wire walk from Marina City's west tower to the top of the 671-foot-tall Leo Burnett building in Chicago, Nov. 2.
The walk, which spans 454 feet, is the highest and steepest skyscraper walk in the history of the Flying Wallenda family.
A Shi'ite Muslim has his child gashed with a knife during a Muharram procession ahead of Ashoura in Mumbai, India Nov. 3.
Ashoura, which falls on the 10th day of the Islamic month of Muharram, commemorates the death of Imam Hussein, grandson of Prophet Mohammad, who was killed in the seventh century battle of Kerbala.
A young girl places a rose at the Berlin Wall memorial in Bernauer Strasse, during a ceremony marking the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall in Berlin, Nov. 9.
A man beats a police officer lying on the ground during a protest in reprisal for the killing of 43 trainee teachers, in Acapulco Nov. 10.
According to the government, corrupt police in league with a local drug gang abducted and apparently murdered the students in the southwestern sate of Guerrero in late Sept.
French National Centre for Space Studies (CNES) president Jean-Yves Le Gall (L), French President Francois Hollande (C), and former French astronaut Claudie Haignere wear 3D glasses during a visit at the Cite des Sciences at La Villette in Paris as they follow the successful landing of the Philae lander on comet 67P/ Churyumov-Gerasimenko, Nov. 12.
The European Space Agency (ESA) landed a probe on a comet, a first in space exploration and the climax of a decade-long mission to get samples from what are the remnants of the birth of Earth's solar system.
A scaffold carrying two workers hangs precariously 69 floors up at One World Trade Center after a cable broke in New York City, Nov. 12.
The two men were rescued by the New York Fire Department.
Israeli Ultra-Orthodox Jews attend the funeral of Aryeh Kopinsky, Calman Levine and Avraham Shmuel Goldberg near the scene of an attack at a Jerusalem synagogue, Nov. 18.
Two Palestinians armed with a meat cleaver and a gun killed four worshippers, including Kopinsky, Levine and Goldberg in the synagogue before being shot dead by police.
A young Hong Kong couple wear gas masks as they pose for a wedding photographer prior to their marriage next to the tents used by pro-democracy demonstrators at the Admiralty protest site in Hong Kong, Nov. 14.
The wall of snow enveloping Buffalo, New York seen from an airplane, Nov. 18.
The epic storm created by lake-effect snow left Buffalo buried in more than six feet of snow in two days.
Australian Aboriginal hunter Roy Gaykamangu of the Yolngu people carries a crocodile he just shot and killed along the edge of a billabong near the 'out station' of Yathalamarra in East Arnhem Land, in Australia, Nov. 22.
Police form a line in the street under a holiday sign after a grand jury decided not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, Nov. 24.
A protester, demanding justice for the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown, interrupts Black Friday shopping while demonstrating with others at the St. Louis Galleria Mall in Missouri, Nov.28.
Ferguson, a predominantly black city of about 21,000 people where almost all the political leaders and police are white, became the focal point of a national debate on race relations after police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown Aug. 9.
U.S. Navy divers, assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 11 (EODMU11), Mobile Dive and Salvage Company 11-7, attach a towing bridle to the Orion Crew Module during the first Exploration Flight Test (EFT-1) NASA Orion Program following its launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's Space Launch Complex 37, in the Pacific Ocean, 600 miles southwest of San Diego, Dec. 5.
The Orion spacecraft orbited Earth twice, reaching an altitude of approximately 3,600 miles above Earth before landing.
A man holds a girl as she tries to escape when she realized she is to to be married, about 80 km (50 miles) from the town of Marigat in Baringo County, Kenya, Dec. 7.
As Pokot tradition dictates, the future husband arrived to her family home with a group of men to collect the girl. The men arrived with the last part of a dowry that included twenty goats, three camels and ten cows for the girl's family.
Pope Francis leaves after praying in front of the statue of the Virgin Mary, on the occasion of the Immaculate Conception feast, in Rome, Dec. 8.
A demonstrator protests recent grand jury decisions not to indict police officers in the deaths of Michael Brown in Missouri and Eric Garner in New York City, at Boston Common in Boston, Mass., Dec. 4.
"I can't breathe," were Eric Garner's last words before he died.
Nobel Peace Prize laureates Indian children's rights activist Kailash Satyarthi (R) and 17-year-old Pakistani girls' education activist Malala Yousafzai display their medals and diplomas during the Nobel Peace Prize awards ceremony at Oslo City Hall in Norway, Dec. 10.
A surfer rides a huge wave during a tow-in surfing session at the Praia do Norte or North beach, in Nazare, Portugal, Dec, 11.
The beach has become a famous break point for big wave riders around the world.
A hostage runs towards a police officer outside Lindt cafe, where other hostages are being held, after escaping at Martin Place in central Sydney Dec. 15, 2014.
Two of the 17 hostages held by the gunman, a self-styled Muslim cleric, died along with the gunman.
Coast Guard members conduct flare training on Plum Island, Mass., Dec. 15.
Women mourn their relative Mohammed Ali Khan, 15, a student who was killed during an attack by Taliban gunmen on the Army Public School, at his home in Peshawar, Pakistan, Dec.16.
At least 132 students and nine staff members were killed after Taliban gunmen broke into a school and opened fire, witnesses said, in the bloodiest massacre the country has seen for years.