Even if Ayatollah Khamenei approves the candidacy of President Ahmadinejad's preferred successor, the disqualification of two top candidates has already damaged the election's legitimacy.
Israel is straining to arrest a slide toward regional conflict after staging an airstrike on a military facility outside Damascus, reportedly to stop a transfer of weapons to Hezbollah.
Dagestan and the rest of the Caucasus republics of Russia have been the site of a long-running Islamic insurgency against Moscow and its local allies. A bombing and separate shooting killed six today.
Reports indicate that 128 people have been killed since clashes erupted between security forces and mostly Sunni protesters calling for the resignation of Shiite Prime Minister Nour al-Maliki.
The churches of two prominent Syrian Orthodox bishops reportedly kidnapped in northern Syria were unable to verify a claim that the pair had been released by their armed rebel captors.
While neither Beijing nor Washington want to see North Korea's belligerence explode into actual conflict, Beijing is not willing to push Pyongyang too hard for fear of toppling the regime.
The hunger strikers charge Israel with failing to provide adequate care for the man, who was diagnosed with cancer. Israel's Prison Service says it took him to a hospital and was arranging an early release.
Vietnam accused China of firing on a fishing boat near the Paracel Islands, something China denies. China claims territorial rights over the entire South China Sea, but several nations dispute this.
The rebel Free Syrian Army's Col. Riad al-Asaad was reportedly injured in a blast, while the Free Syrian Army rejected the political council's appointment of Ghassan Hitto as provisional prime minister.