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Wednesday, April 30, 1997

  • Today's Events
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  • "I'm not ready to take a trip down memory lane just yet. It's getting increasingly difficult for me, and I think it's time to say good-bye."

    -- St. Louis Blues' Center Craig MacTavish

    Today's events

  • French Foreign Minister Herve de Charette is scheduled to visit Washington, D.C.

  • German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel is scheduled to make an official visit to Romania.

  • Colombia's former M-19 guerrilla group, now a political party, is scheduled to hold its annual meeting.

  • Hong Kong's new Western Harbor Tunnel is scheduled to be opened by Chief Secretary Anson Chan. The tunnel is the third from Hong Kong Island to the mainland, and is part of the new infrastructure links to the future airport at Chek Lap Kok.

  • A replica of the ship in which John Cabot discovered Newfoundland leaves Bristol, England, exactly 500 years to the day after his departure.

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    On the horizon

  • On Thursday, May 1, British general elections are held, as well as English local elections.

  • On Friday, May 2, the National Rifle Association opens its annual convention in Seattle.

  • On Saturday, May 3, Ireland is scheduled to host its 1997 Eurovision Song Contest.

  • On Sunday, May 4, U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright is scheduled to visit a guerrilla demobilization camp in Guatemala City as part of the ongoing peace process there.

  • On Monday, May 5, the World Health Organization is scheduled to issue its annual report.

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    On this day

  • In 311, Galerius Valerius Maximianus issued an edict under which Christians were legally recognized in the Roman Empire.

  • In 1789, George Washington was inaugurated as America's first president.

  • In 1803, France agreed to sell Louisiana to America, the formal handover taking place in December, and on this day in 1812 it joined the United States as the 18th state.

  • In 1815, the central provinces were designated as the Kingdom of Poland, under Alexander of Russia.

  • In 1900, American railroad engineer Casey Jones died saving passengers as the Cannonball Express was about to crash.

  • In 1934, under a new constitution in Austria, a dictatorship was set up under Engelbert Dollfuss.

  • In 1945, Adolf Hitler and his wife, Eva Braun, committed suicide in his underground bunker in Berlin; Russian troops penetrated Berlin, capturing the Reichstag and other government buildings.

  • In 1973, President Nixon made a television statement on Watergate accepting responsibility for the bugging that took place at the Washington apartment complex in 1972.

  • In 1974, Nixon handed over partial transcripts of tape recordings to the impeachment inquiry.

  • In 1975, in South Vietnam, President Minh announced an unconditional surrender to the Vietcong, ending the 20th Century's longest conflict.

  • In 1980, in London, armed gunmen seized the Iranian Embassy demanding the release of political prisoners in Iran. The siege lasted six days.

  • In 1981, in Poland, the Central Committee of the Communist Party endorsed its Chairman Stanislav Kania's program of reforms.

  • In 1982, Alvaro Magana was chosen to succeed Jose Napoleon Duarte as president of El Salvador.

  • In 1989, 500,000 people attended a papal Mass in Madagascar where Pope John Paul II beatified Victoire Rasoamanarivo, a 19th century Madagascar woman.

  • In 1990, American hostage Frank Reed was freed in Lebanon after nearly four years in the hands of pro-Iranian kidnappers.

  • In 1991, Maj.-Gen. Justin Lekhanya, Lesotho's military strongman, was ousted in an army coup.

  • In 1992, NATO appointed U.S. Gen. John Shalikashvili as the new commander of its forces in Europe.

  • In 1992, mutinous soldiers in Sierra Leone overthrew President Joseph Momoh in a coup.

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    The countdown is on for the July 1 handover of Hong Kong back to China. To find out more about the situation, check out the Hong Kong 1997 Web site.


    Holidays and more

  • Today is the Queen's Birthday in the Netherlands and Aruba.

  • It's Coronation Day in the Netherlands Antilles.

  • Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands is 59.

  • Actress Jill Clayburgh is 53.

  • Actor Gary Collins is 59.

  • Actor Perry King is 49.

  • Actress Cloris Leachman is 67.

  • Singer Willie Nelson is 64.

  • Actor Burt Young is 57.

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

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