Clashes kill 136 suspected militants

Published May 1, 2007

SANGIN VALLEY, AFGHANISTAN - British troops pushed Monday into Sangin Valley, a Taliban stronghold in Helmand province, drawing fire in the latest NATO drive to help the government take control of southern Afghanistan. As Operation Silicon got under way, the U.S. military reported killing 136 suspected rebels during three days of clashes in the once-stable western province of Herat, the deadliest fighting in the country since January. One U.S. soldier also died in Herat. That bloodshed enraged residents, and about 500 people in the town of Shindand on Monday said the dead were civilians, said the police chief, Gen. Gul Aqa.

Intelligence effort: Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, often at odds over how to deal with a resurgent Taliban, agreed Monday to share intelligence on extremist groups to bolster efforts to deny sanctuary, training and financing to terrorists in both countries.


Smith's daughter gets U.S. passport

NASSAU, BAHAMAS - Larry Birkhead, the father of Anna Nicole Smith's infant daughter, obtained a U.S. passport for the girl Monday and was making final arrangements to take her to the United States, said his attorney, Emerick Knowles. A Bahamian judge last week authorized Birkhead to take 7-month-old Dannielynn out of the country after months of legal battles to prove his paternity claim and gain custody of the girl following the former Playboy playmate's death in February from an accidental drug overdose in Florida. She was 39.


Soldier statue raised at cemetery

TALLINN, ESTONIA - A statue of a Red Army soldier at the heart of deadly riots in Estonia was re-erected at a military cemetery in the capital Monday, overlooking dozens of Russian war graves. The cemetery will also be the new resting place of Red Army soldiers being exhumed from a downtown memorial. The Bronze Soldier's removal from a downtown memorial last week provoked sharp criticism from Moscow and rioting in Estonia - the worst since the Baltic country left the Soviet Union in 1991. One man was stabbed to death, more than 150 people were hurt and 1, 100 were detained. The dispute has further strained tense relations between Russia and Estonia.