Weather impedes jet-crash search

RECIFE, Brazil - Six more bodies from an Air France jet were found yesterday, as ships and planes struggled amid worsening weather in their recovery effort in the Atlantic.

On the coast, investigators examined corpses and received the first wreckage: two plane seats, oxygen masks, water bottles, and several structural pieces, some no bigger than a man's hand. So far, 50 bodies from Flight 447 have been recovered.

More debris from the jet - which went down May 31 with 228 people on board - will arrive by ship in Recife tomorrow. The most important piece recovered to date is the virtually intact vertical stabilizer from the tail section.

The plane's black boxes remain elusive. A French nuclear submarine is scouring the search area in the hopes of hearing pings from the boxes' emergency beacons.

- AP

U.S. ship joins search for MIAs

HANOI, Vietnam - A U.S. Navy ship is participating in the search for the remains of U.S. servicemen missing from the Vietnam War, the first time an American vessel has taken part, embassy officials said yesterday.

The USNS Bruce C. Heezen, an oceanographic survey ship, is conducting a search mission off the coast of Vietnam, part of an effort between the two countries to recover the remains of more than 1,300 U.S. servicemen still unaccounted for in Vietnam.

The U.S. ship has equipment that makes it ideally suited for detecting aircraft crash sites on the ocean floor, an embassy statement said. The United States and Vietnam have been working together to account for missing U.S. servicemen since the 1980s. The current search is their 95th mission. - AP

Moroccans vote in key elections

RABAT, Morocco - Moroccans voted nationwide yesterday in local elections viewed as a test for a new, pro-monarchy party that aims to boost reform and involvement in politics in the North African kingdom - despite likely widespread abstention and fears of electoral fraud.

The vote is a milestone because town officials yield significant power and budgets in Morocco, a solid U.S. ally viewed as among those making the largest strides toward democracy and transparency in the Arab world.

A quota has been set for women to make up at least 12 percent of candidates, which is viewed as a serious challenge for the rural, often deeply traditional areas around the Muslim country. - AP