April 5, 2013 in Nation/World

In brief: Suspect, officer dead after shooting

From Wire Reports
 

JACKSON, Miss. – Authorities say a murder suspect shot an officer inside the Jackson, Miss., police headquarters and that both the suspect and detective are dead.

Police Chief Rebecca Coleman told reporters Thursday the suspect had been arrested and was being interviewed on the third floor when the shooting happened. She says those inside heard shots fired and when other officers entered the interview room, they found both the officer and suspect shot to death.

Police identified the officer as Detective Eric Smith. They did not name the suspect.

The headquarters was blocked off and surrounded by crime tape.

More volunteer cuts to White House pay

WASHINGTON – Three Cabinet secretaries became the latest senior administration officials to give back part of their salaries, in the spirit of government spending cuts.

The announcements that Secretary of State John Kerry, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew will voluntarily reduce their pay came a day after President Barack Obama and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said they’d return 5 percent of their paychecks to the Treasury.

State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said Kerry, however, will give his 5 percent to a charity for department employees.

Kerry makes $183,500 this year. His donation is worth $9,175.

The Homeland Security Department said Napolitano would donate 5 percent of her salary to foundations that benefit Homeland Security staff.

The Treasury Department said that Lew would contribute a portion of his salary to nonprofit organizations that are supporting people and programs adversely affected by automatic government spending cuts. The amount of Lew’s contributions and the organizations receiving the money were still being worked out.

Velshi quits CNN for Al Jazeera America

LOS ANGELES – The Al Jazeera America channel says that CNN chief business correspondent Ali Velshi is coming aboard.

The channel, set to launch later this year, said Thursday that Velshi will develop and host a prime-time program that will debut as a half-hour weekly series.

Velshi’s magazine-style show is expected to expand to a daily schedule by the end of the year, Al Jazeera America said.

In the as-yet untitled series, Velshi will focus on how the economy in the U.S. and internationally affects American lives, the channel said.

Velshi said this week he is exiting CNN, where he hosted “Your Money.”

New bird flu strain kills two more

BEIJING – A middle-aged man who transported poultry for a living and another unidentified person have died from a new strain of bird flu, bringing the death toll to five among 14 confirmed cases in China, the government and state media reported Thursday.

The 48-year-old man, who died in Shanghai, is one of several among the infected believed to have had direct contact with fowl. Until recently, the virus, called H7N9, was not known to infect humans.

The official Xinhua News Agency did not identify the fifth fatality, but said that person also died in Shanghai on Wednesday.

It said the Ministry of Agriculture confirmed on Thursday that the H7N9 virus had been detected in pigeons at a market selling agricultural products in Shanghai.

It is not known how people are becoming sick with the virus, and health officials and scientists caution that there are no indications it can be transmitted from one person to another. Scientists who have studied the virus’s genetic sequence said this week that the virus may have mutated, spreading more easily to other animals and potentially posing a bigger threat to humans.

Guidelines issued Wednesday by the national health agency identify butchers, breeders and sellers of poultry, and those in the meat processing industry as at higher risk.

Experts only identified the first cases on Sunday. Some among the 14 confirmed cases fell ill several weeks ago but only now are being classified as having H7N9.

Xinhua said six cases have been confirmed in Shanghai, four in Jiangsu, three in Zhejiang and one in Anhui.

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