June 1997 News and Events

Updated February 11, 2017 | Infoplease Staff

1997 News Month-By-Month


  • French Vote for Leftists (June 1): In setback to President Chirac, Socialists and Communists gain allies. Vote is a mandate to reject economic austerity and press strong measures to reduce 12.8 percent unemployment rate.
  • Socialist Leader Named French Premier (June 2): President Chirac appoints Lionel Jospin in move to unite left and right in arresting economic decline.
  • Canadian Premier Keeps Office (June 3): Prime Minister Jean Chrtien wins second consecutive election. But his Liberal Party's strength in House of Commons falls to 155 seats, a bare majority.
  • Pope Concludes Visit to Native Poland (June 10): In farewell speech at airport, John Paul II again appeals for national unity and applauds Poles for meeting challenges of democratic transition. He calls on nation to uphold fundamental moral values.
  • Top U.N. Human Rights Official Named (June 12): Secretary General appoints Mary Robinson, who resigned her post as President of Ireland to promote civil rights worldwide. She is a barrister and an expert on human rights law.
  • Israeli Court Bars Trial of Netanyahu (June 15): Supreme tribunal upholds Attorney General's decision not to prosecute Prime Minister or Justice Minister on charges in influence-peddling case.
  • I.R.A. Killings Cancel Peace Talks (June 16): British government calls off negotiations after Irish faction slays two policemen in Northern Ireland.
  • European Union Bolsters Currency Merger (June 16): Rejects French challenge and agrees to ?stability pact? that stresses tight government spending and renews commitment to create a common currency.
  • Canada Deports Saudi in 1996 Bombing (June 17): Hands over to U.S. suspect implicated in deaths of 19 Americans in Saudi Arabia after suspect agrees to cooperate with Justice Department investigators.
  • Pakistani Seized in C.I.A. Killings (June 17): Afghan tribal leaders and Pakistani officials aid in capture of fugitive sought in deaths of two officers outside agency's Virginia headquarters in 1993.
  • Swiss Join Security Pact (June 21): Agree to limited participation in NATO's Partners for Peace in first step away from traditional isolation.
  • ?Summit of Eight? Ends Denver Session (June 22): With Russia as new partner, nations' leaders vote long list of proposals, including call for democracy in Hong Kong and new commitment to peace in Bosnia. Clinton, in break with Europeans, refuses to commit U.S. to specific reduction in ?greenhouse gases.?
  • Hong Kong Returns to Chinese Rule (June 30): Transfer of British colony begins with simple ceremony. (July 1): China resumes sovereignty, ending 150 years of British rule. In martial musical ceremony, Britain's Union Jack is lowered and Beijing's red banner is raised as prosperous capitalist territory is given over to communist control.
  • Islamic Rule Ends in Turkey (June 30): Mesut Yilmaz named Prime Minister after forming government he says will end year's experiment.
  • Ruling Party Defeated in Albania (June 30): President Sali Berisha concedes loss in election after five years in which nation was reduced to chaos.


  • Homicides Down 11 Percent in Nation (June 1): Overall violent crime fell 7 percent, F.B.I. reports.
  • Two-Star General Retires Because of Adultery (June 2): Maj. Gen. John Longhouser, commander of Army's Aberdeen Proving Ground, resigns rather than face possible charges of adultery.
  • Clinton Supports ?Soft Money? Ban (June 5): Endorses move to have Federal Election Commission outlaw large unregulated donations to political parties.
  • Jobless Rate Lowest Since 1973 (June 6): Level in U.S. fell to 4.8 percent in May. Economy flourishing, with low unemployment and low rate of inflation.
  • Ethics Panel Urges Ban on Human Cloning (June 7): Study ordered by President Clinton calls for legislation to restrict practice as ?morally unacceptable.?
  • Clinton Vetoes Flood Relief Measure (June 9): Blocks $8.6 billion emergency aid bill because of unrelated provisions attached to it by Republicans. Each side blames the other as obstructionist, preventing critical flood relief aid to victims in 33 states. (June 12): G.O.P. capitulates on flood relief bill. Congress votes for measure after Republicans agree to delete and modify provisions opposed by President. Clinton signs revised version.
  • General Rejects Joint Chiefs Post (June 9): Air Force Gen. Joseph W. Ralston withdraws name from consideration after failing to convince Congress that he was worthy despite adulterous affair in 1980s.
  • U.S. Plans to Pay Dues Arrears to U.N. (June 10): Clinton and Senate Republicans and Democrats agree on plan to pay $819 million over next three years if U.N. reduces budget as well as U.S. share of payments.
  • Historic Tobacco Settlement Reached (June 20): Proposed agreement would change the way cigarettes are marketed, provide $368.5 billion to compensate states for treating tobacco-related illnesses, and alter legal, regulatory, and public health standards. Accord, subject to ratification, reached by state attorneys general, plaintiffs' lawyers, and industry representatives.
  • Senate Votes Rise in Medicare Cost for Wealthy (June 24): Also backs two-year increase in eligibility age.
  • Clinton Approves Tighter Pollution Limits (June 25): Orders stricter limits on deadly soot and choking smog. Offers states and cities substantial flexibility in choosing how to meet new goals.
  • Congress Votes Major Tax Cuts (June 26): House, 253?179, passes biggest reduction in 16 years despite Democratic charges that bill favors rich. Measure includes reductions in capital gains levy and provides tax breaks for education. (June 27): Senate, 80?18, approves modified measure with Democratic support.
  • Clinton Presents Tax Cut Program (June 30): Stresses education aid in $135 billion reduction over five years but leans toward Republican proposals.


  • Theologians Back Study of Women's Ordination (June 7): Roman Catholic group challenges Vatican and calls for discussion of possibility of women as priests.
  • Jury Votes Death Penalty for McVeigh (June 13): Federal panel in Denver votes unanimously that Timothy J. McVeigh, 29, be executed for bombing of federal building in Oklahoma City that killed 168 persons and injured 850 others on April 19, 1995.
  • Southern Baptists Urge Disney Boycott (June 18): Convention votes action against entire Disney empire. Delegates protest pro-homosexual policies.
  • Killer in ?Megan Case? Sentenced to Die (June 20): New Jersey court dooms Jesse K. Timmendequas, whose rape and murder of 7-year-old neighbor resulted in passage of ?Megan's Law? to protect children from sex offenders by requiring that communities be notified of convicted sex offenders living in their midst.
  • Betty Shabazz, 61, Rights Activist, Dies of Burns (June 23): Widow of Malcolm X fatally injured in fire apparently set by troubled grandson, aged 12.
  • Russian Space Station Damaged in Collision (June 25): Unmanned cargo vessel crashes into Mir during practice docking in most serious accident for a manned spacecraft. Much of power supply knocked out.

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