* Iraq formally asks US to launch air strikes against rebels Iraq has formally called on the US to launch air strikes against jihadist militants who have seized several key cities over the past week.
* Anti-paedophile police fight child porn 'epidemic' The internet trade in images that show child sex abuse is now "an epidemic".
* UN, PA Suggest Israel Made Up Abduction Story Senior officials from both the United Nations and the Palestinian Authority on Tuesday suggested that Israel might have fabricated the story.
* Syria conflict: Toxic chemicals 'used systematically' in attacks The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons sent a fact-finding mission to the country's north last month to investigate several incidents.
* Iraq crisis: Battle grips vital Baiji oil refinery The Iraqi military says it has driven off Islamist-led militants attacking the country's biggest oil refinery amid reports it had been overrun.
* Hamas Attacks 'Harmful' Abbas for Condemning Kidnappings Hamas lost no time taking Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to task on Wednesday.
* Tony Blair: World is repulsed by kidnapping The international community is repulsed by the kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers.
* UNESCO vetoed display on Jewish refugees from Arab lands panel about Jewish refugees from Arab countries was removed from an UNESCO exhibition.
* Muslim candidate wants to shake up EU parliament The 43-year old of Pakistani descent was the first British Muslim to be elected as MEP, in 2004.
* Envoys: Iran refuses to budge on centrifuges Iran is refusing to significantly cut the number of centrifuges it intends to keep to produce nuclear fuel.