Militant attacks worry Pakistan

LAHORE, Pakistan - Security officials warned Wednesday that this week's suicide truck bombing marked a dangerous escalation by militants who are now striking across Pakistan. A police report obtained by The Associated Press shed light on how militants are finding recruits outside their strongholds along the Afghan border.

A yearlong wave of suicide bombings has intensified in recent weeks, posing a stiff challenge to the victors of the Feb. 18 election as they prepare to form a government and begin a new era of civilian rule after eight years of military domination under President Pervez Musharraf.

Woman stopped with brother's skeleton in bag

MUNICH, Germany - A woman was stopped at Munich airport after baggage control handlers found the skeleton of her brother sealed in a plastic bag in her luggage, police said Wednesday.

The 62-year-old woman and her 63-year-old friend, who both live in Italy, were hauled in by airport police Tuesday after a scan of the bag showed a human skull and other bones. The women were traveling to Italy from Brazil.

It turned out that the woman was trying to fulfill the last wish of her brother - who died 11 years ago in Sao Paulo, Brazil - to be buried in Italy.

The travelers produced the appropriate papers from Brazilian authorities for the unusual transport, and were allowed to carry on their way to Naples - bones and all.

3 US soldiers die in rocket attack

BAGHDAD - Three U.S. soldiers were killed in a rocket attack in southern Iraq on Wednesday, bringing to 12 the number of Americans who have been killed in Iraq over the past three days.

With the overall U.S. military death toll in Iraq nearing 4,000, the latest killings mark a significant rise in deadly attacks against Americans.

At least 3,987 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the Iraq war in March 2003, according to an AP count. The figure includes eight military civilians.

British airstrike kills 4 civilians

LONDON - Britain's Press Association reports that the British Ministry of Defense is saying four Afghan civilians were killed and a fifth was injured in an airstrike called in by British forces.

The Defense Ministry told The Associated Press British forces were involved in an 'incident' south of Helmand province and the ministry was investigating reports of civilian deaths in southern Afghanistan.