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Sunday, April 6, 1997

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  • "The current situation could lead to a comprehensive explosion resulting from the great Israeli pressures on our people in security, military, economic and humanitarian spheres."

    -- Palest inian Cabinet

    Today's Events

  • Most of the continental United States returns to Daylight Savings Time. Clocks will be set ahead one hour at 2 a.m.

  • European Union meeting of foreign ministers to discuss progress in the Intergovernmental Cconference (IGC) on EU treaty reforms. The meeting should be held immediately after the informal EU finance ministers' meeting.

  • Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski is visiting Rome, where he plans to meet Pope John Paul II.

  • Citizens of the Serb regions of Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and West Srem are voting in a referendum to decide whether the Serb region should remain as one territory after reintegration into Croatia.

  • Israeli President Ezer Weizman and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will present the Wolf Foundation prizes for 1996-97. The Wolf Foundation, set up to promote science and art, awards up to six prizes every year to outstanding scientists and artists throughout the world.

  • Peruvian Congress President Joy Way visits Japan to discuss the Peru hostage crisis.

  • The Jerusalem International Book Fair will be attended by representatives from Israel, foreign publishing houses and some 28 foreign book editors.

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    On the horizon

  • On Monday, April 7, Turkish Defense Minister Turhan Tayan makes an official visit to Israel.

  • On Tuesday, April 8, NATO Secretary-General Javier Solana is scheduled to visit Moscow for a new round of talks with Russia on NATO expansion.

  • On Wednesday, April 9, a London court decides on extradition for Roisin McAliskey, who is wanted by Germany for an IRA mortar attack on a British army barracks last summer.

  • On Thursday, April 10, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu holds talks with representatives of the European Union at The Hague.

  • On Friday, April 11, the British garrison in Hong Kong closes down HMS Tamar Hong Kong naval base on Stonecutters' Island, a milestone in Britain's military withdrawal ahead of Hong Kong's July 1 takeover by China.

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    On this day

  • In 1199, King Richard The Lionheart (Richard I) died after being wounded while besieging the castle of Chalus in France. He was succeeded by his brother John.

  • In 1483, Raphael, Italian painter, was born as Rafaello Sanzio. A master of Renaissance style, he decorated a large papal chamber in the Vatican -- the Stanza della Segnatura. He died on this day in 1520.

  • In 1490, Matthias I Corvinus, King of Hungary, died. King from 1458, he succeeded in binding Hungary together and occupied much Hapsburg territory, including Vienna.

  • In 1528, Albrecht Duerer, German artist and engraver, died. One of the great German Renaissance artists, he was famous for his copper engravings "Knight, Death and Devil" (1513).

  • In 1580, an earthquake badly damaged St Paul's Cathedral and other churches in London.

  • In 1652, Jan van Riebeeck landed at Table Bay, at the Cape, South Africa, to establish a trading station for the Dutch East India Company.

  • In 1789, George Washington was elected the first president of the United States. He was the only president to be unanimously elected.

  • In 1830, the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints, whose followers are known as Mormons, was founded by Joseph Smith at Fayette in New York State.

  • In 1862, in the U.S. Civil War, the Confederates under Johnston with 43,000 men surprised the Federal army under Grant at the battle of Shiloh.

  • In 1868, in Japan, Emperor Meiji established the Charter Oath which changed the form of government and promised an assembly.

  • In 1874, Harry Houdini, U.S. magician and escapologist, was born as Ehrich Weiss. He could escape from any kind of bonds, container, prison cell or padlocked underwater box.

  • In 1890, Anthony Herman Gerard Fokker, Dutch aircraft designer, was born in Java. He founded the Fokker aircraft factory at Johannistal near Berlin in 1912.

  • In 1895, "Waltzing Matilda," one of Australia's best-known tunes written by bush poet Banjo Paterson, was first publicly performed at a hotel in the remote northern town of Winton.

  • In 1896, the first modern Olympic Games, revived by Baron de Coubetin, were inaugurated in Athens.

  • In 1909, U.S. navy commander Robert Peary, leading an expedition, reached the North pole.

  • In 1917, in World War I, the United States declared war on Germany.

  • In 1929, Andre Previn, U.S. conductor, pianist and composer, born in Berlin. Known as a classical orchestral conductor, notably of Shostakovich, he also conducted and scored film music and arrangements, especially "Gigi" and "Porgy and Bess."

  • In 1941, in World War II, Germany invaded Greece and Yugoslavia, and heavily bombed Belgrade.

  • In 1942, Japan bombed India for the first time and attacked ports in Madras.

  • In 1955, Winston Churchill stepped down as British prime minister for the last time and was succeeded by Anthony Eden.

  • In 1965, Early Bird I, the world's first commercial communications satellite, was launched from Cape Kennedy, Florida. It became operational on June 28.

  • In 1968, Pierre Trudeau became the Liberal Party's prime minister of Canada, succeeding Lester Pearson.

  • In 1971, Igor Stravinsky, Russian-born composer, died in New York. One of the 20th century's leading musical figures and most famous for his ballets "The Rite of Spring" and "Petrushka."

  • In 1984, the Cocos (Keeling) Islands in the Indian Ocean voted to integrate with Australia, ending the 150-year rule of the British Clunies-Ross family.

  • In 1992, the European Community recognized Bosnia-Herzegovina as an independent state, and war broke out between the Bosnian government and Serbs, who seized the capital Sarajevo.

  • In 1994, the presidents of Burundi and Rwanda, Cyprien Ntaryamira and Juvenal Habyarimana, were killed when a rocket downed their plane as it landed in Rwanda. The assassinations unleashed genocide in Rwanda.

  • In 1996, Actress Greer Garson died at 92. She is best known for her 1942 film "Mrs. Miniver," for which she won an Oscar.

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  • Poet Allen Ginsberg, the poet laureate of the Beat Generation whose raw writing and lifestyle epitomized the beatnik generation of the 1950s and 1960s, died Saturday. He was 70. Learn more about Ginsberg's life and poetry here.

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    Holidays and more

  • Today is Chakri Day in Thailand

  • Rik Aalbert (Bert) Blyleven is 46.

  • Merle Haggard is 60.

  • Marilu Henner is 45.

  • Bruce King is 73.

  • Barry Levinson is 55.

  • Andre Pevin is 68.

  • John Ratzenberger is 50.

  • John Scully is 58.

  • Roy Thinnes is 59.

  • Billy Dee Williams is 60.

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    Sources: Associated Press,
    Chase's Calendar of Events 1997, J.P. Morgan

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