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Thursday, July 17, 1997

  • Today's Events
  • On Horizon
  • On This Day
  • Newslink
  • Holidays & more
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  • "There were parts to him that were sinister. He was an intelligent fellow who wanted to be the center of attention, but didn't want to work for it."

    -- Writer Maureen Orth

    Today's events

  • The announcement of the Japan's prestigious Akutagawa and Naoki novel prizes takes place in Tokyo.

  • Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze begins a visit to the United States.

  • The first joint NATO-Russia session takes place in Brussels.

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    On the horizon

  • On Friday, July 18, the European Commission and South Africa are expected to hold talks in Brussels on a future bilateral agreement.

  • On Saturday, July 19, Liberia is scheduled to hold presidential and parliamentary elections to end seven years of civil war.

  • On Sunday, July 20, national elections are scheduled for Vietnam's National Assembly.

  • On Monday, July 21, the 34th World Father Christmas Congress is scheduled to open in Copenhagen.

  • On Tuesday, July 22, the annual UNICEF report is scheduled to be issued in London.

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    On this day

  • In 1453, the Battle of Castillon took place between France and England. The battle, in which the English were routed, signaled the end of the Hundred Years War between the two countries.

  • In 1762, Peter III, emperor of Russia, was killed in a brawl after his abdication and arrest.

  • In 1793, Charlotte Corday, who murdered the French revolutionary leader Jean-Paul Marat, was guillotined.

  • In 1841, the humorous magazine Punch was first published in London.

  • In 1890, Cecil Rhodes became prime minister of the Cape Colony of South Africa.

  • In 1917, the British Royal Family changed its name from the House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha to Windsor amid anti-German feelings in Britain during World War I.

  • In 1945, the Potsdam Conference began between Churchill, Stalin and Truman. Churchill was replaced by Clement Atlee before it ended following a change of government in Britain.

  • In 1951, Prince Baudouin became fifth King of the Belgians after his father Leopold III abdicated.

  • In 1968, the Iraqi government was overthrown by a Revolutionary Command Council headed by Gen. Hassan al-Bakr.

  • In 1973, a military coup in Afghanistan led by former prime minister Sardar Muhammad Daoud Khan overthrew King Mohammed Zahir Shah; a republic was proclaimed with Daoud as president.

  • In 1975, Apollo 18 and the Soviet Union's Soyuz 19 linked up 140 miles above the Earth. The commanders, Tom Stafford and Alexei Leonov, shook hands through the hatches of their spacecraft and exchanged greetings in each other's languages.

  • In 1979, Anastasia Somoza resigned as Nicaraguan president and fled the country, being replaced by a government led by Sandinista leader Daniel Ortega.

  • In 1981, more than 100 people died when Israeli jets bombed Palestinian areas of Beirut.

  • In 1992, Czechoslovakian president Vaclav Havel announced his resignation; the Slovaks, who had rejected Havel as head of state, proclaimed their sovereignty.

  • In 1996, Paul Touvier, the only Frenchman to be jailed for World War II crimes against humanity, died. Touvier committed his crimes as intelligence chief of the pro-Nazi militia in the Lyon region during the final year of the German occupation.

  • In 1996, TWA flight 800 exploded in a fireball over the Atlantic Ocean after taking off from Kennedy Airport, New York, en route for Paris. All 230 on board died.

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    Today is the first anniversary of the crash of TWA Flight 800 off New York's Long Island. The flight's untimely end killed 230 people minutes after taking off for Paris. Click here to access the Web site dedicated to the friends and family of those who died in the tragic crash.


    Holidays and more

  • Today the Prophet Mohammad's Birthday is celebrated in Afghanistan, Bahrain, Burkina Faso, Fiji, Indonesia, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Syria and Yemen.

  • Mawlid Al-Nabi is celebrated in Algeria, Bangladesh, Benin, Brunei Darussalam, Chad, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guinea, the Ivory Coast Republic, Jordan, Lebanon, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal, Sierra Leona, Somali Democratic Republic, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates.

  • Today is Constitution Day in Korea.

  • Actress Lucie Arnaz is 46.

  • Actress Diahann Carroll is 62.

  • Actress Phyliss Diller is 80.

  • Actor David Hasselhoff is 45.

  • Actor Donald Sutherland is 62.

  • Actor Alex Winter is 32.

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

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