Harlem, May 8 (AP/UNB) — The New York Fire Department says six people, including four children, were killed in an early morning blaze in a Harlem apartment building.
Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro says they received a call reporting the blaze at 1:40 a.m. Wednesday from a person across the street from the seven-story Fred Samuels Houses on Seventh Avenue near 142 Street.
Nigro says firefighters responded within three minutes to the fifth-floor fire.
He says firefighters aggressively moved in to extinguish the flames and when they reached two rear bedrooms they found the bodies of two adults and four children ranging in ages from 3 to 11. They are all believed to be family members.
Nigro says roughly 100 firefighters were on the scene and it took more than an hour to get the fire under control.
Rio De Janeiro, May 8 (AP/UNB) — Brazil's national museum said Tuesday it has recovered 200 pieces from its Egypt collection after a devastating fire last September. The collection had 700 pieces and was the largest in Latin America before the blaze.
The artifacts recovered include statues, vases and amulets that had been buried inside the casket of a mummy and hadn't seen the light of day since the mummy was buried around 750 B.C.
Museum director Alexander Kellner told reporters the museum's recovery effort is being conducted with funds provided by the German government, an online money-raising campaign and an allocation from the previous Brazilian government. He said the new administration of President Jair Bolsonaro hasn't allocated any money for the museum and recovery efforts will soon run out of funding.
"Look, all this is going to end, there is no way we can continue," Kellner said.
The national museum depends on funding from the Ministry of Education and Kellner said they have not been able to make direct contact with ministry officials.
"We need to have direct contact with the minister," he said. "Without the Education Ministry, we won't have another national museum."
The ministry didn't respond immediately to requests for comment.
The museum was running on a fraction of the budget that officials said they needed when the fire ravaged most of its contents. From 2015 to 2017, the museum spent only $4,000 on safety equipment, according to a nonprofit group that tracks public spending.
In total, the museum has recovered just 2,700 artifacts out of the more than 20 million it held before the fire, officials said.
An investigation found the fire was caused by an air conditioner that was installed incorrectly.
Baghdad, May 8 (AP/UNB) — U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a lightning visit Tuesday to Baghdad aimed at showing support for the Iraqi government as the United States has been picking up intelligence that Iran is threatening American interests in the Middle East.
The top American diplomat's unannounced trip to the Iraqi capital began and ended after nightfall under heavy security following the abrupt cancellation of a visit to Germany.
Journalists from The Associated Press and other organizations accompanying Pompeo were not told of his new destination until his plane left for Baghdad and were not allowed to report on his whereabouts until after his plane had taken off for London.
The secretary told reporters on the flight that his meetings with Iraq's president and prime minister were intended to demonstrate U.S. support for "a sovereign, independent" Iraq, free from the influence of neighboring Iran.
Pompeo also said he wanted to underscore Iraq's need to protect Americans in their country.
"We wanted to let them know about the increased threat stream that we had seen and give them a little bit more background on that so they could ensure that they were doing all they could to provide protection for our team," he said. "They understood, too, it's important for their country."
Pompeo's visit came as the Trump administration intensified its pressure campaign against Iran. The U.S. said this week that it was rushing an aircraft carrier group to the Middle East to deter or respond to any Iranian attack.
U.S. officials have said there were indications Iran was planning to retaliate for the Trump administration's stepped-up sanctions on the country, although the threat information remains vague.
Pompeo would not be specific about the more recent threat information involving Iran except that they involved "imminent" plans for attacks. "We're taking every action to deter them," he said. "Other than that, I just can't say any more."
Before landing in Baghdad he said that that he would make clear in his meetings that any attack by Iran or its proxies on American forces in Iraq would affect the Iraqi government too.
The "campaign to continue to prevent ISIS terror inside of Iraq itself is something that's very central ... to the Iraqi government," Pompeo said.
In Washington, an American official said the decision to deploy the carrier group and a group of Air Force bombers to the Middle East was based in part on intelligence indications that Iran had moved short-range ballistic missiles by boat in waters off its shores.
Iran, meanwhile, was expected to announced Wednesday that it would partially withdraw from the nuclear deal it struck with world powers in 2015.
As tensions rise between Washington and Tehran, Baghdad in some ways is caught in the middle. Iraq has a close relationship with the U.S., which is leading the international coalition in the war against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. More than 5,000 U.S. troops are stationed on Iraqi soil.
But Iraq is also tightly enmeshed with Iran in trade, security and political matters, and it has been loath to antagonize its larger neighbor. Iran won the ear of many top Iraqi politicians after it stepped in to fill the political vacuum following the 2003 U.S. invasion. It also can count on the loyalty of several powerful Iraqi militias, which have fought previously against U.S. forces in the country and on the side of Iran's allies in Syria in that country's civil war.
Responding to a question about whether Iraq could protect U.S. interests from attacks by Iran and its proxy forces, Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi said Tuesday that Iraq takes its responsibilities seriously. "This is an obligation that Iraq honors," he said.
The Trump administration has made several recent moves to squeeze Iran. Last month, President Donald Trump announced the U.S. would no longer exempt any countries from U.S. sanctions if they continue to buy Iranian oil. The U.S. also designated Iran's Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist group, the first time it has ever taken such a step for an entire division of another government.
Trump withdrew from the Obama administration's landmark nuclear deal with Iran in May 2018 and, in the months that followed, reinstated punishing sanctions, including those targeting Iran's oil, shipping and banking sectors.
While Trump has sought to dismantle much of President Barack Obama's policies, he particularly criticized the Iran nuclear deal for failing to address Tehran's ballistic missile program and what he described as its malign influence across the rest of the Mideast.
Fraijanes, May 8 (AP/UNB) — Gunfire during a riot in a Guatemala prison Tuesday left at least seven inmates dead and 10 wounded, authorities said.
National Civil Police said the dead were all prisoners at the Pavon Rehabilitation Model Farm in the municipality of Fraijanes, about 10 miles (17 kilometers) east of Guatemala City.
Prisoners had control of the facility for some eight hours Tuesday. Gunshots could be heard inside the prison and some inmates could be seen carrying guns. Prisoners carried their own dead to the entrance so authorities could identify them.
Some 1,500 police officers and soldiers were sent to the scene, and regained control by late afternoon, officials said.
Cecilio Chacaj of the municipal firefighters said 10 prisoners suffered bullet wounds.
Prison authorities said the facility was built to house 900 prisoners but held 4,137.
Highlands Ranch, May 8 (AP/UNB) — Two students opened fire Tuesday inside a charter school in an affluent suburb of Denver not far from Columbine High School , killing a teenager, wounding eight and spreading minutes of terror before they were taken into custody with no injuries, authorities said.
Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock said the pair walked into the STEM School Highlands Ranch and began shooting students in two classrooms. Within minutes, deputies at a nearby sheriff's department substation entered the school and arrested the two suspects after a struggle.
"As officers were arriving at the school, they could still hear gunshots," Douglas County Undersheriff Holly Nicholson-Kluth said.
Authorities did not release the name of the student who died, but said it was an 18-year-old man.
"I have to believe that the quick response of the officers that got inside that school helped save lives," Spurlock said. He did not identify the suspects, but said they were not previously known to authorities. Authorities planned to search their homes and a vehicle at the school, he said.
The shooting took place exactly a week after a gunman killed two students and wounded four at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte. It also comes nearly three weeks after neighboring Littleton marked the grim 20th anniversary of the Columbine school massacre that killed 13 people. The two schools are separated by about 7 miles (11 kilometers) in adjacent communities south of Denver.
"Tragically, this community and those surrounding it know all too well these hateful and horrible acts of violence," White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement. President Donald Trump had been briefed on the shooting and was in touch with state and local officials, Deere said.
STEM is a public charter school with a focus on science, technology, engineering and math. It has more than 1,850 students in kindergarten through 12th grade.
Student Christian Paulson told television station KMGH that he was in study hall when he saw kids running and shouting, "School shooter!"
"And I'm like, what? Is this real or fake? And then I just went after them," Christian Paulson said. "And apparently, this is all real. And I tried to run with my life, but I'm out of breath."
Rocco DeChalk, who lives near the school, told television station KUSA that he saw so many students running past his house that at first he thought it was a gym class. He went outside and saw a teenage boy who had been shot in the back being helped by a teacher and another student.
They brought the boy into his kitchen and alerted a police officer, who sent for an ambulance.
"He made a comment, 'Oh, I'm starting to feel it now,'" DeChalk said. "I told him that was probably the adrenaline kicking in and he was going into shock."
Three area hospitals reported treating eight people in connection with the attack. Two were listed in serious condition, two were listed as stable, one was in good condition and three were released.
Lines of firetrucks, ambulances and law enforcement vehicles from multiple agencies were at the school, and medical helicopters landed on a grassy field.
The sheriff's office directed parents to a nearby recreational center to pick up their children. A fleet of school buses arrived and dropped off students, some of whom were crying and holding hands with their classmates as they were helped off. An ambulance also pulled up and let out a half-dozen children, none of whom appeared to be physically injured.
"We know this is a very worrisome situation for parents," Nicholson-Kluth said. "Relatives are worried, and we are trying to get them back together as soon as possible."
Gov. Jared Polis said in a statement that he was making state public-safety resources available to help secure the site and evacuate students.
"The heart of all Colorado is with the victims and their families," he said.
Democratic Rep. Jason Crow, a gun-control supporter whose congressional district includes STEM, said the gun violence cannot continue.
"It is not enough to send thoughts and prayers. It is empty. It is weak, and it does an injustice to our children who are on the front lines of this violence," he said.