November 1997 News and Events

Updated July 10, 2020 | Infoplease Staff

1997 News Month-By-Month


  • U.S. Imposes New Sanctions on Sudan (Nov. 4): Clinton orders stricter prohibitions for alleged sponsorship of terrorism and human rights abuses.
  • Chinese Divert Yangtze River (Nov. 8): Workers clear way for construction of world's biggest dam in major engineering feat with political overtones.
  • China Releases Leading Dissident (Nov. 10): State Department reports medical parole for Wei Jingsheng three weeks after China–U.N. summit meeting. Wei had spent 18 years in jail. (Nov. 16): Wei arrives in Detroit by air and is admitted to hospital.
  • China and Russia Agree on Border (Nov. 10): Presidents Yeltsin and Jiang reach accord in Shanghai meeting on clear border stretching from Sea of Japan to Kazakhstan. Their session is cordial.
  • Affirmative Action Upheld in Europe (Nov. 11): High court of European Union affirms principle of preferences for women in hiring and promotion to correct past discrimination. Wide impact likely.
  • U.N. Imposes New Sanctions on Iraq (Nov. 12): Security Council votes unanimously for moves including ban on foreign travel by Iraqi officials who do not cooperate with United Nations disarmament commission.
  • Four Americans Slain in Pakistan (Nov. 12): Shooting of auditors for Texas-based oil and gas company is believed to be linked to conviction of Pakistani in U.S. trial as killer of two C.I.A. employees outside Washington. Pakistani driver of car also slain.
  • Iraq Expels U.S. Weapons Inspectors (Nov. 13): President Clinton denounces action but refrains from military response. (Nov. 20): Clinton welcomes Saddam Hussein's decision to back down and allow U.N. inspectors to resume search for weapons of mass destruction. (Nov. 28): Iraq still bars inspectors from palaces, military bases, and intelligence centers.
  • Yeltsin Dismisses Two Top Reformers (Nov. 13): Ousts economic officials as scandal grows over large book contract awarded to First Deputy Prime Minister Anatoly B. Chubais who is reported ready to resign.
  • Clinton Sends Carrier in Warning to Iraq (Nov. 14): Dispatches George Washington and four other ships to join the Nimitz in Persian Gulf as further sign that U.S. is prepared to act to prevent Iraq from developing ability to use chemical or biological weapons.
  • Islamic Militants Slay Scores in Egypt (Nov. 17): Fifty-eight foreign tourists among 70 killed outside 3,400-year-old temple at Luxor in planned ambush.
  • Tough Action Sought in Asian Economic Crisis (Nov. 25): Asia Pacific summit meeting at Vancouver ends with leaders calling for stringent domestic policies and closer international monitoring to contain financial emergencies in South Korea, Indonesia, and Thailand.
  • Israeli Cabinet Approves Ceding of Land (Nov. 30): Backs Prime Minister Netanyahu on granting more territory to Palestinians before final settlement is reached.


  • Chinese President Ends U.S. Visit (Nov. 2): In California on last stop, Jiang Zemin cheerfully promotes trans-Pacific commerce despite noisy protests about China's human rights records.
  • Incumbents Successful in Nation's Elections (Nov. 5): They do well in state and local balloting. Almost everywhere, referendums blocked moves to change laws or increase taxes.
  • House, 426–4, Votes Curb on I.R.S. (Nov. 5): Approves board composed mainly of private citizens to oversee tax collection agency and guard rights of individual taxpayers in disputes over payments.
  • Jobless Rate Lowest Since 1973 (Nov. 7): Falls to 4.7 percent in October. Hourly earnings increase.
  • Clinton Addresses Gay–Lesbian Group (Nov. 8): President applauded as first to address such organization.
  • Clinton Trade Measure Sidetracked (Nov. 10): President suffers major setback as Republicans shelve bill at President's request rather than allowing it to be defeated. Passage next year deemed remote.
  • Pakistani Guilty in Killing of 2 C.I.A. Agents (Nov. 10): Mir Amal Kansi, 33, convicted in Virginia court of 1993 shootings outside intelligence headquarters.
  • G.O.P. Leaders Accept Spending Compromise (Nov. 12): In rush to adjournment, agree with White House on three measures. Yield in disputes over international family planning and on school vouchers.
  • Congress Rejects Funds for U.N. and I.M.F. (Nov. 13): Defeats plan for overdue payments to United Nations and rejects additional funds for International Monetary Fund for averting foreign financial crises. 105th Congress ends first session with retreat from earlier bipartisan agreements.
  • Some Switches for Airbags Approved (Nov. 17): Federal agency endorses off-and-on devices for those who say they drive more children than fit in back seat.
  • President Approves Major F.D.A. Revision (Nov. 21): Signs measure passed by Congress ordering agency to hasten approval of new drugs and devices.
  • Teamsters Accept U.S. Financial Oversight (Nov. 24): Justice Department and union agree on federal monitor of spending to prevent improper expenditures.


  • Martin Luther King III Elected (Nov. 1): Eldest son of first leader of Southern Christian Leadership Conference, is fourth president of civil rights group.
  • Agreement Averts Amtrak Strike (Nov. 2): Basic agreement reached with union representing 2,300 track and tunnel workers. Congressional action needed.
  • Second Oklahoma Bombing Trial Opens (Nov. 3): Terry L. Nichols accused of having been actively involved in planning attack and building the bomb.
  • Art Collection Sold for $206.5 Million (Nov. 10): Picasso painting gets $48.2 million, leading in auction at Christie's of Victor and Sally Ganz masterpieces.
  • Eastman Kodak Laying Off 10,000 Employees (Nov. 11): Announces 10 percent reduction, biggest such action announced by any American company in 1997.
  • Two Convicted in Trade Center Bombing (Nov. 12): Federal jury in New York finds Ramzi Ahmed Yousef, 29, guilty of directing and helping carry out plot to punish U.S. for support of Israel. Second man, Eyad Ismiol, 26, convicted of driving van that carried weapon into underground garage in February 1993.
  • Flight 800 Inquiry Finds No Sign of Crime (Nov. 13): F.B.I. formally ends criminal investigation into crash of T.W.A. airliner in 1996.
  • Teamsters' Head Barred From Ballot (Nov. 17): Union monitor forbids Ron Carey from running for re-election after finding Carey had backed plan to use $700,000 in union funds in own campaign.
  • Space Shuttle Orbits on Science Mission (Nov. 19): Columbia, with international crew, executes unusual 180-degree roll-in at Cape Canaveral, Fla. (Nov. 24): Two astronauts manually retrieve Spartan astronomy satellite that had gone into a slow spin. Delicate maneuver executed 170 miles above Earth.
  • Iowa Woman Bears Seven Live Babies (Nov. 19): Bobbi McCaughey, 29, is mother of highest number ever born in U.S. Team of more than 40 specialists performed Caesarean section. Four boys and three girls removed from uterus. Smallest is 2.5 pounds, largest 3.4 pounds. Babies about two months premature.

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