April was the fourth month of that common year. The month, which began on a 1997 Tuesday, ended on a Wednesday after 30 days.
Comet Hale–Bopp meets or exceeds most predictions when it passes perihelion. The popular television series (based on the video games of the same name), Pokémon premieres on TV Tokyo.
Fire breaks out in a pilgrim camp on the Plain of Mena, 7 miles (11 km) from
Mecca; 343 die. Former S.S. Captain Erich Priebke is retried; on July 22 he is sentenced to 5 years in prison.
A Pegasus rocket carries the remains of 24 people into earth orbit, in the first space burial.
Haouch Khemisti massacre: 93 villagers are killed in Algeria. A 126-day hostage crisis at the residence of the Japanese ambassador in
Lima, Peru, ends after government commandos storm and capture the building, rescuing 71 hostages. One hostage dies of a heart attack, 2 soldiers are killed by rebel fire, and all 14 Túpac Amaru rebels are slain. France supports the new transitional government in Zaire, withdrawing its support of Mobutu Sese Seko.
April 23, 1997 (Wednesday)
Andrew Cunanan murders Jeffrey Trail, beginning a murder spree that lasts until July and ends with the murder of fashion designer Gianni Versace.
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