* UN chief: Hizbullah must be disbanded UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned that Lebanon will not be a fully sovereign state until Hizbullah, and other militia groups are disbanded.
* US pushes for Iraq security deal US defence chief Robert Gates is seeking support from politicians on a draft deal to extend the US mandate in Iraq, which expires later this year.
* Analysts: Al-Qaeda awash in funds despite meltdown The meltdown in the global financial system may spare al-Qaeda.
* Somali Islamists threaten Kenya Somali Islamists say they will attack Kenya if it goes ahead with plans to train 10,000 government troops.
* Israel leads ME in approved arms purchases For the first time in years and in the face of Iran's nuclear drive, Israel surpassed Saudi Arabia in arms purchases in 2008.
* OPEC calls emergency meeting as oil prices plummet Oil prices plummeted Thursday, falling below $70 a barrel for the first time in 16 months, prompting the OPEC oil cartel to call for an emergency meeting next week.
* Thousands Visit Judea, Samaria Tourist Sites Several tourist sites in Judea and Samaria have boasted thousands of visitors each day during the intermediate days of Sukkot.
* Iran seeks Security Council seat Voting is to begin shortly at the UN headquarters in New York to decide which nations will serve as temporary members of the Security Council.
* Bush to Assad: Sever Ties with Iran and Take the Golan Heights U.S. President George W. Bush offered Syrian President Bashar Assad a secret deal to pull Israel out of the Golan Heights.* Barroso and Sarkozy plead for permanent EU presidency European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and French President Nicolas Sarkozy - currently chairing the EU - have urged the need for a permanent EU presidency.