Indianapolis shooting: eight killed at FedEx facility
The Guardian’s Jessica Glenza and agencies report:
At least eight people have been shot dead at a FedEx facility in Indianapolis and the suspected gunman has killed himself, police say.
Multiple other people were injured and went to local hospitals, a police spokesperson, Genae Cook, said at an early morning news conference on Friday.
At least four people were admitted to hospital, including one with critical injuries. Two others were treated at the scene and released. No law enforcement officers were injured.
“We’re still trying to ascertain the exact reason and cause for this incident,” Cook said.
“We’re working as quickly as we can,” Indianapolis deputy chief of investigations Craig McCartt said on CBS This Morning on Friday.
“We’re working with families. We have a reunification center right now that’s up and running at a nearby hotel.”
Japan’s ambassador to the US said the meeting between Joe Biden and Yoshihide Suga will focus on the need for a “free and open” Indo-Pacific region.
Ambassador Koji Tomita previewed the visit of the Japanese prime minister by providing some written answers to questions from Voice of America.
“The international order is being challenged in various ways, so we hope to continue having specific discussions on the ways that Japan and the U.S. can take initiative in realizing our shared vision,” Tomita told VOA.
The ambassador noted “the security environment in the [Pacific] region has become increasingly severe.”
He said Japan is committed to maintaining “the peace and prosperity of the entire region,” and China’s growing influence is an important consideration as Japan works toward that goal.
“While China is a growing topic in Washington, D.C., these days, I can assure you that as a country situated nearby, China is always a big presence for Japan,” Tomita added.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in will also visit Washington next month, the White House announced yesterday.
The White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, said Moon will likely meet with Joe Biden at some point in the second half of May.
The announcement comes on the heels of defense secretary Lloyd Austin and secretary of state Antony Blinken’s visit to Seoul.
Psaki said Moon’s visit will “highlight the ironclad US-South Korea alliance and the longstanding ties and friendships between the people of our two countries”.
A reporter asked Psaki whether the White House visits of Moon and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga were meant to send a signal to China.
The press secretary replied, “I would say these relationships have a range of areas of cooperation. It’s an opportunity to discuss those issues in person, and I would anticipate that China will be a part of the discussions.”
Japanese PM to visit White House in Biden’s first visit from foreign leader
Greetings from Washington, live blog readers.
The Japanese prime minister, Yoshihide Suga, will visit the White House today, marking Joe Biden’s first in-person meeting with a foreign leader since he became president in January.
The two leaders will participate in an expanded bilateral meeting before taking questions from reporters later in the afternoon.
A senior administration official said yesterday: “I think the idea of the visit is to underscore what we would really describe as almost an axiom or a maxim for the US role in the region: The United States can only be effective in Asia when the US-Japan relationship is strong and Japan is steady and stable.”
The senior official acknowledged that North Korea and China will be primary topics of conversation between Biden and Suga, although Japan has to walk a fine line where its neighbors are concerned.
“We also recognize the deep economic and commercial ties between Japan and China,” the senior official said. “And Prime Minister Suga wants to walk a careful course, and we respect that.”
The blog will have more details on the visit coming up, so stay tuned.