This Day inHistory – April 7

Today is the 97th day of 2021. There are 268 days left in the year.


1966: US hydrogen bomb lost from bomber is recovered in Mediterranean Sea off coast of Spain.



1509: France declares war on Venice.

1897: Turkey declares war on Greece.

1933: A purge of Jews, socialists and democrats in public office begins in Germany, with the Nazis coming to power a month earlier.

1936: Cape Parliament passes native representation Bill permitting natives to elect three Europeans to represent them in Union Parliament in South Africa.

1945: US aircraft carrier planes sink Japan’s largest battleship, the Yamato, in World War II.

1948: The United Nations World Health Organization is established to research and prevent disease and improve public health worldwide.

1953: Dag Hammarskjold, Swedish diplomat, is elected secretary general of the United Nations.

1957: New York City’s last electric trolley completes its final run from Queens to Manhattan.

1967: Her Majesty The Queen knights Jamaican Prime Minister Sir Donald Sangster.

1969: US Supreme Court unanimously strikes down laws prohibiting private possession of obscene material.

1974: Major oil-producing countries meeting in Geneva decide to set up fund for developing nations hit hard by higher petroleum prices.

1976: China’s Deputy Prime Minister Deng Xiaoping is deposed and Hua Guofeng named prime minister.

1988: Iran and Iraq bomb each other’s capitals and other towns, killing and wounding scores of people.

1994: Rampaging troops kill Rwanda’s acting premier and 11 Belgian UN soldiers and a civil war erupts in Rwanda, a day after a mysterious plane crash claimed the lives of the presidents of Rwanda and Burundi.

1998: Indonesia and the International Monetary Fund agree on the third package of measures in six months to get a US$43-billion bailout on track.

1999: Yugoslav authorities seal off Kosovo’s main border crossings, preventing ethnic Albanians from leaving as the wave of refugees approaches the half-million mark.

2001: Armed police break up protests in several Turkish cities after the lira falls sharply and prices soar. Thousands of laid-off workers and citizens call for the resignation of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and his Government.

2002: Costa Ricans in a run-off election choose Abel Pacheco of the ruling right-of-centre Social Christian Unity Party as their next president.

2004: The French Government says that 550 new research posts will be created in France, easing tensions within the elite research community that took to the streets in angry demonstrations to denounce a lack of funding and posts.

2003: An audio tape purportedly made by Osama bin Laden, the fugitive leader of the al-Qaeda terrorist organisation, is delivered to The Associated Press urging Islamic followers to devote themselves to “martyrdom” by engaging in suicide attacks against the US and Britain.

2007: A Russian rocket carrying the US billionaire Charles Simonyi and two cosmonauts blasts off on a 13-day trip to the international space station. Simonyi, the fifth paying space tourist to make the trip, paid US$20 million.

2008: A coroner’s jury in London rules that Princess Diana and boyfriend Dodi Fayed were unlawfully killed through the reckless actions of their driver and paparazzi in 1997.

2009: Israel successfully tests an anti-missile system designed to protect the country against Iranian attack, the Defence Ministry says, perfecting technology developed in response to failures of similar systems during the 1991 Gulf War.

2011: A gunman roams the halls of an elementary school in Rio de Janeiro and kills 11 children, lining them up against a wall and shooting them in the head at point-blank range.

2013: A fierce battle between US-backed Afghan forces and Taliban militants in a remote corner of eastern Afghanistan leaves nearly 20 people dead, including 11 Afghan children killed in an airstrike and an American civilian adviser.

2014: Pro-Moscow activists barricaded inside government buildings in eastern Ukraine proclaim their region independent and call for a referendum on seceding from Ukraine.


St Francis Xavier, Jesuit missionary (1506-1552); William Wordsworth, English poet (1770-1850); Sir David Low, New Zealand cartoonist (1891-1964); Billie Holiday, US jazz singer (1915-1957); Francis Ford Coppola, US director (1939- ); David Frost, British television personality (1939-2013); Jackie Chan, Hong Kong movie star (1954- ); Russell Crowe, Australian actor (1964- )

– AP/Jamaica Observer

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