WARSAW, Poland — The remains of a Polish geologist beheaded by Islamic militants in Pakistan were returned Wednesday to Poland in a casket draped in the two countries' flags and covered in flowers.
Piotr Stanczak's body was flown to Warsaw's military airport on a Pakistani air force plane. In a short ceremony on the tarmac, a Roman Catholic priest prayed over the white casket.
Dressed in black, Stanczak's son and girlfriend stood briefly by the casket, their heads bowed.
The geologist was one of a handful of foreigners kidnapped in Pakistan in recent months as the country witnessed a deterioration in security along with a rise in al-Qaida and Taliban-led violence.
Stanczak was kidnapped Sept. 28 close to the Afghan border while he was carrying out a project for a Krakow-based geophysics company that surveys oil and gas fields.
He was held hostage for several months before his captors beheaded him in February, a killing that they videotaped.
On Sunday, a car dropped the casket near a paramilitary camp in Razmak, Pakistan. Officials then confirmed the remains were those of Stanczak.