Video of this morning's explosion in Deir Ez Zor in Syria
1535 GMT: Yemen. Officials have said at least 22 insurgents and 12 Yemeni soldiers were killed in clashes and air strikes overnight in a regime offensive in the south of the country.
Fighting erupted late on Friday and continued Saturday on the outskirts of Jaar, held by the insrugents. A Government official said its forces were about one kilometre (0.6 mile) from the city.Twelve Yemeni soldiers and 17 militants were killed in the fighting and an air strike killed three militants on the outskirts of the city, the official said.
SANA said the bomb, at the site of the Military Constructions Institution, had 1000 kilogrammes (about 2200 pounds) of explosive, damaging buildings and leaving a crater 5 metres (about 16 feet) round and 2 1/2 metres (about 8 feet) deep.
Claimed footage of the moment of the explosion:
The day is a public holiday, with security forces were deployed to all city entrances.
The last poll in Benghazi during the reign of King Idris I, overthrown by Muammar Qaddafi in 1969.
There are 414 candidates contesting 41 seats in the city council. More than 200,000 residents registered to vote.
Fifteen people have been slain in the Iraqi capital in the past two days.
1015 GMT: Syria. State media says seven people have died and 100 were injured in the Deir Ez Zor car bomb this morning.
Omar Abu Laila, spokesperson of the Free Syrian Army in Deir Ez Zor on Saturday has denied responsibility for the explosion, saying the group “is incapable of reaching the area, due to the firm security measures".
Aby Laila accused the regime of fabricating the incident “to send a message to the UN monitors who are visiting the province".
0955 GMT: Syria. The message of a Syrian boy at a Friday protest in Binnish:
Reports indicate the blast struck the parking lot of a military intelligence complex. State TV showed footage of damaged buildings, smoldering cars, and trucks turned upside down.
A team of United Nations observers inspected the area of the explosion.
0915 GMT: Syria. In a letter to United Nations General Assembly, Syria's ambassador Bashar Ja'afari has set out the effect of the political crisis on tourism, declaring that hotel occupancy had dropped from an average of 90% in March 2011 to less than 15% now.
"In the cities and areas where there is tension, the impact of the crisis on the tourism sector has been totally disastrous: tourism activity has come to a complete halt and hotels have ceased to operate," Ja'afari wrote in the letter, dated 7 May and made public on Thursday. "All restaurants, roadside rest-stops, fairgrounds and other leisure facilities have also had to close."
Ja'afari blamed travel websites for warning tourists to stay away, countries for halting flights to Syria, and "certain armed terrorist groups which target transport and communication routes and transport companies, in addition to terrorising, killing and abducting civilians".
He continued, "Some 40 per cent of all those employed in the tourism sector in Syria are estimated to have lost their jobs completely or to have had their hours reduced."
0605 GMT: Syria. Friday's title for protests across the country was "The Champions of Aleppo University", and the rallies duly celebrated the students who have been gathering, including in a mass protest on Thursday, to call for change.
However, yesterday's demonstrations were much more. Among the hundreds of rallies --- the Local Co-ordination Committees of Syria claimed 648 protests in 558 locations --- residents in Al Rastan turned out in a loud, large gathering despite heavy shelling of the town in the morning. In places such as the Damascus suburb of Douma, the demonstrators defied the influx of security forces and the threat of arrest and gunfire. And in Daraa Province, the local people used the presence of United Nations observers as a limited shield to carry out their call for regime change.
Twenty-seven people still died during the day, but this Friday was a marker that the claim of "cease-fire" is now a diversion and so is an exclusive emphasis on bombs and insurgency. This peaceful defiance continues to have a central place in the narrative of Syria's political conflict.