At least 40 people were killed and 90 wounded in a series of explosions in the center of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on Wednesday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, citing medical sources.

Human Rights Watch released a report Wednesday which revealed that Hamas' security forces in Gaza are committing severe abuses, including torture of detainees, arrests without warrants, forced confessions, unfair trials and mock executions.

Iranian riot police clashed on Wednesday with demonstrators and foreign exchange dealers in the capital Tehran protesting against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad over the collapse of the country's currency, which has lost a third of its value against the dollar in a week, witnesses said.

Maria Chudnovsky, an Israeli-American graduate of the Haifa Technion was among the 23 recipients to receive the MacArthur fellowship ‘genius’ grant, for her research exploring connections between graph theory and other branches of mathematics, including linear programming and geometry.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has reportedly accused Defense Minister Ehud Barak of trying to damage relations between Israel and the Obama administration, claiming that Barak and his colleagues have prevented the 2013 budget from being approved.

The foreign minister of Denmark, Villy Sovndal, is urging the European Union to set down regulations that would force European marketing chains and stores to clearly label products originating in Israeli settlements.

Marwan Makhoul, a Palestinian poet living in Israel, writes of his precarious position, perched on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian divide.

A single network comprised of diverse Islamic extremists who all identify with Al-Qaida's ideology is responsible for most of the attacks that have taken place along the Egyptian border over the past year, Israeli intelligence now believes.