GAZA/JERUSALEM - Israel and Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip have agreed to a U.N.-requested 12-hour humanitarian truce to begin on Saturday morning, and efforts to secure a long-term cease-fire moved ahead.
KIEV - Ukraine's prime minister has launched what promises to be a bitter election campaign that could divide pro-Western parties and complicate their efforts to fight pro-Russian rebels in the country's east.
NEW YORK - Thousands of people took to the streets of New York City on Friday evening to protest Israel's offensive in the Gaza Strip and demand an end to the violence that has already killed nearly 850 Palestinians.
MOSCOW - Russian authorities accused Ukraine of trying to kill law enforcement officials who were checking reports of cross-border shooting on Friday by firing a volley of mortar rounds over the frontier into Russia.
BAGHDAD - Iraq's most influential Shi'ite cleric urged political leaders on Friday to refrain from clinging to their posts - an apparent reference to Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, who has defied demands that he step aside.
BRUSSELS - The European Union reached outline agreement on Friday to impose the first economic sanctions on Russia over its behaviour in Ukraine but scaled back their scope to exclude technology for the crucial gas sector.
PARIS/BAMAKO - Poor weather was the most likely cause of the crash of an Air Algerie flight in the West African country of Mali that killed all 118 people on board, French officials said on Friday.
FRANKFURT - German airlines Lufthansa and Air Berlin said they will resume flights to Israel on Saturday July 26, lifting a ban imposed in response to fears that rockets being fired from the Gaza strip could pose a threat to aircraft.
BEIRUT - A Syrian Air Force strike on the border with Lebanon killed around 20 Syrian rebel fighters on Friday, security sources said, in the latest spillover of violence into the area.
MIAMI - A state judge struck down Florida's gay marriage ban on Friday in the latest in a string of legal gay-rights victories that have nonetheless been put on hold for resolution by higher courts.