What happened in March of 1997?
- March 4 – U.S. President Bill Clinton bars federal funding for any research on human cloning.
- March 6 – President of Guyana Cheddi Jagan dies in office.
- March 6 – Pablo Picasso‘s Tête de Femme is stolen from a London gallery (recovered a week later).
- March 6 – In Sri Lanka, Tamil Tigers overrun a military base and kill more than 200.
- March 11 – An explosion at the Tokaimura nuclear waste reprocessing plant in Japan exposes 35 workers to low-level radioactive contamination, in the worst nuclear accident in Japan’s history.
- March 13 – India‘s Missionaries of Charity chooses Sister Nirmala to succeed Mother Teresa as its leader.
- March 13 – The National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China creates a new Chongqing Municipality, out of part of Sichuan.
- March 13 – The Phoenix Lights are seen over Phoenix, AZ.
- March 16 – Sandline affair: On Bougainville Island, soldiers of commander Jerry Singirok arrest Tim Spicer and his mercenaries of the Sandline International.
- March 18 – The tail of a Russian An-24 charter plane breaks off while en-route to Turkey, causing the plane to crash, killing all 50 on board, and resulting in the grounding of all An-24s.
- March 21 – In Zaire, Etienne Tshiksekedi is appointed prime minister; he ejects supporters of Mobutu Sese Seko from his cabinet.
- March 21 – Mercenaries of Sandline International withdraw from Papua New Guinea.
- March 22 – Tara Lipinski, 14, becomes the youngest women’s world figure skating champion.
- March 22 – The Comet Hale-Bopp makes its closest approach to Earth.
- March 24 – The 69th Academy Awards, hosted by Billy Crystal, are held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California, with The English Patient winning Best Picture.
- March 26 – In San Diego, California, 39 Heaven’s Gate cultists commit mass suicide at their compound.
- March 26 – Julius Chan resigns as prime minister of Papua New Guinea, ending the Sandline affair.