- A bomb hidden in a parked car struck the funeral procession of a Sunni tribal leader who was gunned down earlier yesterday, killing at least 26 mourners as al Qaeda appeared to turn up its campaign of frightening its growing opposition into submission.

The attack in Fallujah, 40 miles west of Baghdad, targeted the passing procession for Alaa Zuwaid, a 60-year-old restaurant owner who was part of a Sunni tribe that had formed an alliance against al Qaeda. Police said 45 other people were wounded in the bombing.

Zuwaid was killed that morning when militants shot him in front of his house, police said - nearly a month after his 25-year-old son was slain as he walked down the street.

In all, 87 people were killed or found dead in sectarian violence across Iraq.

Thousands of U.S. and Iraqi troops pressed their search through the fields of southern Iraq in scorching temperatures, and the military said it would not call off the hunt for two missing U.S. soldiers.

The body of a third soldier - 20-year-old Pfc. Joseph Anzack Jr., missing since a May 12 ambush claimed by al Qaeda - was pulled from the Euphrates River and identified Wednesday.

The U.S. military also announced yesterday that two U.S. soldiers were killed the day before while conducting combat operations in Anbar Province. *

-Associated Press