* Sarkozy pleads for Europe of nations Outgoing EU president Nicolas Sarkozy on Tuesday (16 December) pleaded for a Europe built on strong states as opposed to a federal Europe.
* 'Iran influence over Hamas is growing' Iran's influence over Hamas has increased in recent months and Teheran is playing a key role in the terror group's decision-making process.
* Quartet: US-led Mideast talks 'irreversible' The Quartet of Middle East peace negotiators said on Monday there was no turning back from US-led talks between the Israelis and Palestinians.
* Lieberman: No to Land for Peace The Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel Our Home) party opened its election campaign Sunday night in the Golan.
* Abbas won't run for another term Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas plans to hold the elections for the president's office and the Palestinian Legislative Council in April 2009.
* European Parliament approves opening of defence market The EU moved one step closer to a single market in the area of defence on Tuesday (16 December).
* Remains of Second Temple Era Jewish Town Revealed Archaeological evidence of a Jewish town located on the edge of the Samaria desert during the Second Temple Period (516 BCE to 70 CE) will be made public later this month.
* Poll: Most Israelis oppose leaving West Bank for Arab world's recognition Two-thirds of Palestinians support a plan that offers Israel full recognition from the Arab world in return for withdrawing from occupied territory.
* Turkey - EU talks entering critical year, report says Both Turkey and the EU should work to boost the pace of accession negotiations.* Russia in talks with Iran over sale of anti-aircraft missiles, despite Israeli objections Earlier this year, Russia said it would not move forward with the transaction.