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April 2000

World

  • Beijing Court Frees Researcher (April 3): In reversal, quashes conviction of Chinese-born Stanford University scientist, Hua Di, who had been jailed for more than two years for “revealing state secrets.”
  • Serb Arrested for War Crimes (April 3): NATO troops seize Bosnian war leader Momcilo Krajisnik on several charges, including genocide.
  • Japanese Premier Suffers Stroke (April 3): Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi, 62, in intensive care. Senior cabinet minister, Mikio Aoki, appointed acting chief. (April 5): Ruling party names Yoshiro Mori to succeed Keizo Obuchi, who fell into coma after stroke.
  • Ousted Pakistani Leader Convicted (April 6): Nawaz Sharif, deposed as prime minister in Oct. military coup, found guilty of hijacking and sentenced to life imprisonment. Six codefendants acquitted.
  • Iran Government Action Protested (April 8): Dozens arrested as rampage follows conservative government efforts to overturn reformers' victories in parliamentary elections.
  • Dismissal in Embassy Bombing (April 8): C.I.A. fires mid-level officer held responsible for wrongful attack on Chinese building in Belgrade during NATO's war against Yugoslavia. Six other employees punished for the targeting error.
  • Peru President Suffers Setback (April 9): Alberto K. Fujimori fails to secure first-round victory in contest with Alejandro Toledo, a business school professor. President had been regarded a shoo-in, but Toledo rallied amid accusations that Fujimori tried to steal the vote.
  • Two Koreas Agree to Summit Meeting (April 10): Heads of North and South Korea to hold unprecedented diplomatic effort to heal one of cold war's last conflicts.
  • Greek Prime Minister Reelected (April 10): By narrow margin, voters retain Socialist Costas Simitis.
  • Russia Ratifies Arms Reduction Treaty (April 14): Lower house of parliament approves long-delayed nuclear Start II pact. (April 19): Upper house approves treaty. Passage indicates Putin wants a productive relationship with West.
  • World Trade Leaders Convene (April 16): Finance ministers and other leaders meet in Washington as thousands protest. (April 17): Conferees agree that World Bank should step up fight against AIDS and assist those adversely affected by globalization.
  • French List Assets Seized from Jews (April 17): Study reports Nazis and French collaborators stole much more than earlier thought. Also reveals extensive efforts to return property or indemnify Jews.
  • UN Rights Group Defies U.S. (April 18): Votes in Geneva not to act on U.S. resolution critical of China's human rights record. Embarrassing defeat for Clinton.
  • Putin Hints at Chechnya Peace Plan (April 21): Russian president-elect admits that Moscow had discussed peace plans with Chechen president Aslan Maskhadov.
  • China Seizes 100 Members of Spiritual Group (April 25): Falun Gong members were celebrating anniversary of Beijing's crackdown on the movement.
  • Iran's Reformers under Attack (April 27): Hard-line Islamic clerics bolster crackdown and close several reform newspapers.
  • Russians Free Former Chechnya Rebels (April 30): Release 31 from detention camp in attempt to win popular support in the war-torn republic.

Nation

  • Microsoft Loses in Antitrust Suit (April 3): U.S. judge Thomas Penfield Jackson rules software giant displayed anticompetitive behavior and sides with government on most important points. Options range from imposing restrictions on company's conduct to a breakup.
  • Secretary of Labor Exonerated (April 5): Independent prosecutor reports Alexis M. Herman, the fifth officer in Clinton cabinet investigated by an independent counsel, did not break any laws and should not be indicted for corruption.
  • Plane Crash Kills 19 Marines (April 8): Controversial Osprey, a hybrid craft, destroyed in Arizona.
  • Congress Limits Assets Seizures (April 11): Completes legislation that protects a citizen's personal property from government seizure before trials begin.
  • President Bars Request for Pardon (April 13): Clinton says he will not seek action by his successor even though he thinks impeachment proceedings had inflicted sufficient punishment.
  • Capitol Agreement on Patients' Rights (April 14): Senate and House reach preliminary agreement on appeals process for patients refused care by health maintenance organizations.
  • Pentagon Clears Accused General (April 14): No basis found for allegations of personal misconduct by Lt. Gen. Claudia J. Kennedy, the Army's highest-ranking woman. She had accused another general of sexual harassment.
  • Cuban Boy Reunited with Father After Raid (April 22): Armed immigration agents storm Miami home where boy had been living with great-uncle's family. Child reunited with father outside Washington.
  • Albright Acts after Security Lapse (April 24): Orders shakeup in State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research as F.B.I. investigates disappearance of laptop computer that contained highly sensitive files.
  • Snowmobiles Banned in National Parks (April 25): In a move to preserve public areas, National Park Service prohibits recreational use in nearly all national parks, monuments, and recreational areas.
  • U.S. Seeks Breakup of Microsoft (April 26): Joins 17 states in asking for ruling by federal judge. Calls for restraints on software company while split is implemented.
  • Gay Rights Parade in Washington (April 30): Hundreds of thousands celebrate progress of gay rights movement and press for legislation against hate crimes.

Business/Science/Society

  • Estrogen Tied to Heart Disorders (April 4): Researchers tell 25,000 women in federal study that instead of protecting the heart, as had been assumed, estrogen may have resulted in a slightly higher risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Most Nations Fail to Supply Safe Blood (April 6): World Health Organization reports blood supplies in two-thirds of the world may contribute to spread of AIDS virus, some forms of hepatitis, and other diseases.
  • Holocaust Denier Loses Libel Suit (April 11): British court drops libel suit brought by David Irving against U.S. professor and author Deborah Lipstadt. Judge calls Irving “an active Holocaust denier.”
  • Red Cross Considers New Symbol (April 14): World organization moves to adopt red diamond emblem in addition to red cross and red crescent, in part to clear way for Israel to join after 50 years excluded.
  • Stock Market Recovers after Sharp Drop (April 14): Rampant selling closes one of worst weeks in history of U.S. markets. Dow Jones average down 5.55%; Nasdaq index off nearly 10%. (April 17): Stock prices level off, then rocket. Recovery calms fears of market collapse.
  • Salman Rushdie Returns to India (April 15): Novelist back after being banned for his The Satanic Verses.
  • Fiber Studies Find No Benefit to Colon (April 19): Two tests involving thousands of persons contradict wide belief that low-fat, high-fiber foods can reduce risk of colon and rectal cancer.
  • Heart of Dinosaur Reported Found (April 20): Paleontologists say they discovered rare object in chest cavity of fossil skeleton uncovered in South Dakota. Heart, size of a grapefruit, was encased in stone. Organ fossilized into reddish-brown stone 66 million years ago.
  • Vermont Approves Same-Sex Unions (April 25): House of Representatives, 79–68, passes bill already voted by Senate and accepted by governor.
  • Gun Makers Sue to Block Controls (April 26): Seven large manufacturers seek to keep New York, Connecticut, and 16 local governments from favoring purchases from companies that agree to stringent rules.
  • First Success of Gene Therapy Reported (April 27): French doctors use treatment to save several infants who might have died from severe immune disorder. Technique involves adding working genes to cells. Researchers note that patients had a disease especially suited for the treatment.
  • Mozambique Assesses Flood Losses (April 29): Thousands homeless as floods sweep away schools and clinics, crops, and cattle. Durban government says country needs about $427 million for reconstruction.

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