Blair set to win third term, but faces setbacks

LONDON - Tony Blair won a historic third term as prime minister Thursday but his Labour Party suffered a sharply reduced parliamentary majority in apparent punishment for going to war in Iraq, according to projections based on exit polls.

Such an outcome, if confirmed by the actual vote count, could set the stage for Blair to be replaced in midterm by a party rival such as Treasury Chief Gordon Brown.

The BBC and ITV television stations projected that Labour would have a 68-seat majority, down from its 161-seat lead over the combined opposition in the previous House of Commons. The first four seats to be declared were won by Labour incumbents, according to official results.

Fighting surges in Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan - A surge of fighting in Afghanistan's restive south killed 64 insurgents and 10 Afghan security men, the worst single loss suffered by the American-trained government army, U.S. and Afghan officials said Thursday.

Four attacks in Iraq kill 26

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Iraqis seeking jobs with security forces were targeted once again Thursday when a suicide bomber with explosives strapped to his body mingled among hundreds of men and blew himself up in one of four attacks that killed 26 people.

Russian forces say they foiled terrorist attack

ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia - Russian security forces said they foiled a major terrorist attack Thursday, discovering a truck bomb and a cache of poisons days before dozens of dignitaries arrive in Moscow for celebrations marking the Allied victory over Nazi Germany.

Pope heads to summer palace

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy - Pope Benedict XVI flew by helicopter Thursday to this ancient, lakeside hill town for an excursion and to take formal possession of his summer palace in his first trip outside Rome since becoming pontiff.

- From wire reports