Posted: Oct 4, 2013 4:00 PM
Updated: Oct 5, 2013 4:01 AM
NYC sisters of woman killed by police in DC following chase question use of deadly force
NEW YORK (AP) The sisters of a woman who was fatally shot in Washington after trying to ram her car through a White House barrier say she was not a criminal and police should not have shot her.
"We're still very confused as a family why she's not still alive," Amy Carey-Jones said late Friday, speaking of her 34-year-old sister, Miriam Carey. "I really feel like it's not justified, not justified."
Another sister, retired New York City police officer Valarie Carey, said there was "no need for a gun to be used when there was no gunfire coming from the vehicle."
The sisters spoke outside Valarie Carey's home in Brooklyn Friday night after traveling to Washington to identify Miriam Carey's body.
Attempts to reach the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington for comment early Saturday were unsuccessful. The department said in a statement Friday that its Internal Affairs Division is investigating the circumstances that led to the shooting. The Secret Service, Capitol Police and FBI are assisting, the department said.
Congress likely to give federal workers their back pay at end of shutdown, now in day 5
WASHINGTON (AP) A partial government shutdown enters its fifth day, with Congress convening for a session that promises no progress in breaking the impasse but will at least offer back pay to furloughed federal workers.
The GOP House is scheduled Saturday to vote on legislation backed by the White House and congressional Democrats that would make sure the 800,000 sidelined government employees would get their pay when the shutdown ends. The Senate is expected to clear it later, even as early as Saturday, for President Barack Obama's signature.
Lawmakers keep replaying the same script on Capitol Hill: House Republicans under Speaker John Boehner pass piecemeal bills to reopen popular and politically sensitive programs on Friday, disaster relief and food aid for the poor while Democrats insist that the House vote on a straightforward Senate-passed measure to reopen all of government.
"The only thing standing between this Congress and an open government is Speaker Boehner's refusal to allow a vote on a clean continuing resolution," Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., said Friday.
There seemed little chance of that. For one thing, flinching by either side on the shutdown might be seen as weakening one's hand in an even more important fight looming just over the horizon as the combatants in Washington increasingly shifted their focus to a midmonth deadline for averting a first-ever default.
Kerry says shutdown no sign of US weakness but warns Congress about message it sends
BALI, Indonesia (AP) U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry warned Congress on Saturday to think "long and hard" about the negative message that the partial government shutdown is sending around the world, even as he disputed the perception that the deadlock in Washington is a sign of weakness.
The seemingly contradictory points underscored one problem the Obama administration faces as it tries to convince lawmakers to end the shutdown: arguing that it hurts the national security interests of the United States and its friends while at the same time telling nervous allies that it does no such thing.
"I believe that those standing in the way (of a resolution) need to think long and hard about the message that we send to the world when we can't get our own act together," Kerry told reporters on the sidelines of the annual Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum on the Indonesian resort island of Bali.
"End it now, end it today," he said.
Kerry noted that security assistance to critical allies like Israel may be affected and that the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, which oversees sanctions on rogue countries like Iran, may be forced to furlough nearly all its staff.
Analysis: Allies worried US turning inward to handle political chaos at home
An unmistakable sense of unease has been growing in capitals around the world as the U.S. government from afar looks increasingly befuddled shirking from a military confrontation in Syria, stymied at home by a gridlocked Congress and in danger of defaulting on sovereign debt, which could plunge the world's financial system into chaos.
While each of the factors may be unrelated to the direct exercise of U.S. foreign policy, taken together they give some allies the sense that Washington is not as firm as it used to be in its resolve and its financial capacity, providing an opening for China or Russia to fill the void, an Asian foreign minister told a group of journalists in New York this week.
Concerns will only deepen now that President Barack Obama canceled travel this weekend to the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum in Bali and the East Asia Summit in Brunei. He pulled out of the gatherings to stay home to deal with the government shutdown and looming fears that Congress will block an increase in U.S. borrowing power, a move that could lead to a U.S. default.
The U.S. is still a pillar of defense for places in Asia like Taiwan and South Korea, providing a vital security umbrella against China. It also still has strong allies in the Middle East, including Israel and the Gulf Arab states arrayed against al-Qaida and Iran.
But in interviews with academics, government leaders and diplomats, faith that the U.S. will always be there is fraying more than a little.
Military strike by 'foreign' soldiers reported in southern Somali town against militants
MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) Foreign military forces carried out a pre-dawn strike Saturday against foreign fighters in the same southern Somalia village where U.S. Navy SEALS four years ago killed a most-wanted al-Qaida operative, officials said.
The strike was carried out in the town of Barawe in the hours before morning prayers against what one official said were "high-profile" targets. The strike comes exactly two weeks after al-Shabab militants attacked Nairobi's Westgate Mall, a four-day terrorist assault that killed at least 67 people in neighboring Kenya.
The leader of al-Shabab, Mukhtar Abu Zubeyr, also known as Ahmed Godane, claimed responsibility for the attack and said it was in retaliation for Kenya's military deployment inside Somalia.
A resident of Barawe a seaside town 240 kilometers (150 miles) south of Mogadishu said by telephone that heavy gunfire woke up residents before dawn prayers. An al-Shabab fighter who gave his name as Abu Mohamed said "foreign" soldiers attacked a house, prompting militants to rush to the scene to capture a foreign soldier. Mohamed said that effort was not successful.
The foreign troops attacked a two-story house close to the beach in Barawe, battling their way inside, said Mohamed, who said he had visited the scene of the attack. Foreign fighters resided in the house, Mohamed said. Al-Shabab has a formal alliance with al-Qaida, and hundreds of foreign fighters from the U.S., Britain and Middle Eastern countries are known to fight alongside Somali members of al-Shabab.
Man sets himself on fire on National Mall; taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries
WASHINGTON (AP) A man set himself on fire on the National Mall in the nation's capital as passers-by rushed over to help put out the flames, officials and witnesses said Friday afternoon.
The reason for the self-immolation was not immediately clear and the man's identity was not disclosed. But it occurred in public view, on a central national gathering place, in a city still rattled by a mass shooting last month and a high-speed car chase outside the U.S. Capitol on Thursday that ended with a woman being shot dead by police with a young child in the car.
The man on the Mall suffered life-threatening injuries and was airlifted to the hospital, said District of Columbia fire department spokesman Tim Wilson.
He was standing by himself in the center portion of the Mall when he emptied the contents of a red gasoline can on himself and set himself on fire moments later, said Katy Scheflen, who witnessed it as she walked across the area. Police say they responded around 4:20 p.m. Friday.
Scheflen said the man was clearly alive as the fire spread, and passing joggers took off their shirts in an effort to help put out the flames. It was not clear who actually extinguished the flames.
Tropical Storm Karen weakens as it approaches central Gulf Coast; heavy rains expected
BRAITHWAITE, La. (AP) Tropical Storm Karen continued losing strength Saturday as it headed toward the central Gulf Coast, but forecasters were still expecting it to bring significant rain and potential flooding to low-lying areas.
The National Hurricane Center reported at 2 a.m. Saturday that Karen's maximum sustained winds had dropped to 40 mph, making it a weak tropical storm. The storm was moving west-northwest at 10 mph to 15 mph.
Forecasters expect the center of Karen to be near the southeast Louisiana coast on Saturday night, when they say there is a slight chance of strengthening.
Karen began losing its punch after a busy day of preparations along the Gulf Coast for the storm, a late-arriving worry in what had been a slow hurricane season in the U.S. Karen would be the second named storm to make landfall in the U.S. the first since Tropical Storm Andrea hit Florida in June.
Pickups hauling boat trailers and flatbed trucks laden with crab traps exited vulnerable, low-lying areas of southeast Louisiana on Friday.
Search for bodies in Italy migrant shipwreck called off for 2nd day due to choppy seas
LAMPEDUSA, Italy (AP) Authorities say the search to recover bodies from a fishing boat that sank off the southern island of Lampedusa has been called off for a second day because of bad weather.
Financial police Maj. Leonardo Ricci said Saturday that choppy seas are preventing divers from reaching the wreck, now resting on the seabed. More than 200 people are still missing.
The 20-meter boat packed with migrants sank Thursday when they ship capsized after they started a fire to attract attention. The migrants had spent two days at sea traveling from Libya. Just 155 people survived. So far, 111 bodies have been recovered.
Early Saturday, a fishing boat flotilla threw a single bouquet of yellow flowers into the sea at the site.
Minor leads emotional Braves in must-win game, beats Dodgers 4-3 to even NL division series
ATLANTA (AP) Flashing plenty of fire and some nifty defense, the Atlanta Braves recaptured their Turner Field swagger.
Now, they're headed to Dodger Stadium with the NL division series all tied up.
Mike Minor pitched six strong innings in his first postseason start, Jason Heyward had a two-run single and Atlanta made one slick play after another in the field, holding off Los Angeles 4-3 on Friday night to even the best-of-five series at one game apiece.
Just what the Braves needed after an ugly 6-1 loss in the opener their first postseason win at the Ted since the 2005 NLDS, snapping a streak of four straight defeats at a park where they had the best home record in the majors during the regular season.
"We definitely didn't want to lose two games in front of our home crowd," Chris Johnson said.
Vietnam military mastermind Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap, who defeated French and Americans, dies, 102
HANOI, Vietnam (AP) Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap, the brilliant and ruthless commander who led the outgunned Vietnamese to victory first over the French and then the Americans, died Friday. The last of the country's old-guard revolutionaries was 102.
A national hero, Giap enjoyed a legacy second only to that of his mentor, founding president and independence leader Ho Chi Minh.
Giap died in a military hospital in the capital of Hanoi, where he had spent nearly four years because of illnesses, according to a government official and a person close to him. Both spoke on condition of anonymity before the death was announced in state-controlled media.
Known as the "Red Napoleon," Giap commanded guerrillas who wore sandals made of car tires and lugged artillery piece by piece over mountains to encircle and crush the French army at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. The unlikely victory still studied at military schools led to Vietnam's independence and hastened the collapse of colonialism across Indochina and beyond.
Giap then defeated the U.S.-backed South Vietnam government in April 1975, reuniting a country that had been split into communist and noncommunist states. He regularly accepted heavy combat losses to achieve his goals.