Inspector finds bomb under Spanish rail line

MADRID, Spain -- A Spanish railroad inspector found a 26-pound bomb hidden in a bag on a busy high-speed line Friday, and police said the device may contain the same dynamite used in last month's Madrid train bombings that killed 191 people. Authorities immediately stopped six bullet trains using the Madrid-Seville line after the bomb was discovered before noon under a track about 40 miles south of Madrid. About 1,600 passengers left their trains and were taken to their destinations by charter buses. The bomb failed to detonate because it did wasn't properly connected, officials said.

Congress defies Bush veto threat of highway bill

WASHINGTON -- The House overwhelmingly passed a $275 billion highway and transit bill Friday, testing the resolve of President Bush to hold the line on spending. White House officials consider the legislation fiscally irresponsible and have said they will advise Bush to veto it. The 357-65 vote sent the election-year jobs-and-concrete bill to negotiations with the Senate, which in February approved a $318 billion package, also by more than the two-thirds margin needed to override a presidential veto. In approving the popular measure, lawmakers from both parties showed impatience at suggested spending restraints.

U.S. raises requirements for foreign visitors

WASHINGTON -- A program requiring foreigners to be fingerprinted and photographed before entering the United States is being expanded to include millions of travelers from some of America's staunchest allies, officials said Friday. The move affects citizens in 27 countries -- including Britain, Japan and Australia -- who had been allowed to travel within the United States without visas for up to 90 days. Officials said the change was prompted in part by concerns that terrorists might try to exploit those exemptions. While foreign governments expressed understanding, a U.S. travel organization worried the new restrictions could limit trips to America just as the number of foreign visitors was returning to the levels of before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The changes will take effect by Sept. 30.

Police discredit student's kidnapping story as hoax

MADISON, Wis. -- Police strongly suggested Friday that a college student's tale of being kidnapped at knifepoint was a hoax, saying she researched places to hide and bought a knife, rope and duct tape to make her disappearance look like an abduction. University of Wisconsin sophomore Audrey Seiler, 20, was found cold and dehydrated but otherwise unharmed Wednesday in a marsh, four days after she disappeared. She told police she had been abducted from outside her apartment about two miles away, but surveillance video showed her walking out of the apartment wearing only sweats.

Cooler weather helps efforts to halt wildfire

LAPORTE, Colo. -- Cooler weather and light rain bolstered efforts Friday to halt an 8,000-acre wildfire that's forced scores of people from their homes in northern Colorado. Despite the lower temperatures and higher humidity, an evacuation warning covering 140 homes remained in effect for a second day, and an additional 108 homes were placed on alert in the rolling hills 70 miles northwest of Denver.Fire officials said they considered 23 homes and 70 outbuildings threatened, but were encouraged that wind was pushing the flames into unpopulated national forest. One house and a garage have been destroyed. The fire was 15 percent contained.

-- From wire reports

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