* WHO declares swine flu pandemic The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared a global flu pandemic after holding an emergency meeting.
* Mitchell urges Arab 'steps' for peace US Mideast envoy George Mitchell on Thursday urged Arab states to take "meaningful steps and important actions" toward peace with Israel.
* Iran presidential campaign reaches finale Campaigning in Iran's presidential election has ended after three weeks of mass rallies and increasingly acrimonious political rhetoric.
* Hamas to Obama: Treat Us like Iran Hamas chief in Syria, Khaled Mashaal complained Thursday that the United States is discriminating against Hamas in comparison to Iran.
* Oil price leaps to year's high Predictions of $250 a barrel on fears for oil reserves, hopes of economic recovery and hedging against weak dollar.
* Benny Begin: Why Palestinian State is Unacceptable Cabinet Minister Benny Begin says the PA Arabs want a 2-state solution simply in order to end up with just one state – Palestine.
* US Holocaust museum guard killed An 88-year-old man reputed to be a violent racist has opened fire in front of crowds of people inside Washington DC's Holocaust museum, killing a guard.
* Carter: No Mideast peace without Hamas Former President Jimmy Carter Thursday reiterated that there can be no peace between Israel and the Palestinians without involving Hamas.
* Barroso urges EU states to appoint new commission president next week EU leaders meeting for a summit in Brussels next week must appoint a new head of the European Commission.
* The hierarchy of power in Iran Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei: Wields control over every major decision either directly or through a network of hand-picked loyalists and institutions.