The AFP news calendar

Monday, February 18 to Sunday, March 17

Monday, February 18

ABU DHABI: International Defence Exhibition & Conference continues (to 21)

ABUJA: Nigeria oil and gas industry conference (to 21)

ALLAHABAD, India: The Kumbh Mela Hindu festival continues (to 25)

BANGKOK: Thailand, US continue annual military drills, with Myanmar observing for the first time (to 21)

BOSTON, Massachusetts: Annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science wraps up

BRUSSELS: Court to consider child killer Marc Dutroux's request for early release

- EU foreign ministers meet

CONAKRY: Opposition holds general strike against alleged bid to rig upcoming parliamentary elections

GENEVA: UN Council for Human Rights considers controversial report on Israeli settlements on Palestinian land

- UN Independent Commission of Inquiry on Syria presents latest findings ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court resumes contempt case against chairman of an anti-corruption watchdog

ISTANBUL: Hearing in trial of pianist Fazil Say on charges of insulting Islam

JOHANNESBURG: Former World Bank managing director Mamphela Ramphele announces political plans amid speculation she will form South Africa's newest political party

NAIROBI: UN Environment Agency holds Global Ministerial Environment Forum

PAZARDJIK, Bulgaria: Trial resumes of 13 Muslims, most of them imams, accused of propagating radical ideas

WARSAW: Debate on Poland joining eurozone

YEREVAN: Armenians vote in presidential election

Tuesday, February 19

ATHENS: French President Francois Hollande visits

BRUSSELS: Verdict due in trial of Belgian ex-journalist accused of sexual tourism in Morocco

CAPE TOWN: Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi meets South African counterpart Maite Nkoana-Mashabane ahead of the BRICS summit in March in South Africa

GENEVA: Fifth Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy starts in run-up to next UN Human Rights Council session

LONDON: Fashion Week wraps up

THE HAGUE: Confirmation of charges hearing at the International Criminal Court for former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo, suspected of crimes against humanity during bloody 2010-11 post-election crisis

Wednesday, February 20

ATHENS: Unions call a general strike against fresh austerity measures

KUALA LUMPUR: Football. AFC co-hosts Interpol conference against corruption in wake of worldwide match fixing scandal

MADRID: Spanish parliament holds state of the nation debate, chaired by Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy

MALABO: Third African-South America summit, with heads of state meeting on 22 (to 23)

NEW YORK: Sony presents new PlayStation model

OSLO: German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits

PARIS: Council of State discusses plight of two elephants facing death sentence because of a tuberculosis diagnosis

WARSAW: European Parliament President Martin Schulz visits

Thursday, February 21

BRUSSELS: European Commission releases monthly list of members who failed to comply with EU directives

HARARE: Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe's 89th birthday, to be celebrated February 23

ISTANBUL: Trial in absentia continues of four Israeli ex-military chiefs over deadly 2010 raid on a Gaza-bound Turkish ship

PORT-AU-PRINCE: Former Haitian dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier, accused of corruption, appears before court

VIENNA: French European Affairs Minister Bernard Cazeneuve meets with Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger

Friday February 22

ABUJA: ECOWAS court examines release request of Simone and Michel Gbagbo, wife and son of former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo

BRUSSELS: EU energy ministers meet

- European Commission releases economic forecasts for 2013-14

DJIBOUTI: Parliamentary elections

HEBRON, Palestinian territories: Fourth international campaign of solidarity with Palestinian residents of Hebron (to 25)

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court resumes hearing case of seven terror suspects held without trial since 2007

MADRID: Champion cyclist Alberto Contador testifies in trial of doctors charged in the Puerto doping scandal

PARIS: France holds its top annual cinema awards, the Cesars

STOCKHOLM: French Interior Minister Manuel Valls visits

Saturday, February 23

PALMA DE MALLORCA, Spain: King Juan Carlos' son-in-law Inaki Urdangarin to appear in court over corruption probe

OUAGADOUGOU: FESPACO, Africa's biggest cinema festival (to March 2)

Sunday, February 24

LOS ANGELES: Oscars award ceremony

ROME: Italy holds general elections (and 25)

SOFIA: Bulgarian Orthodox Church names new patriarch

Monday, February 25

ABU DHABI: Verdict in appeal trial of 10 pirates jailed for life for hijacking a ship off Oman in 2011

ANKARA: German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits

BARCELONA: Opening of Mobile World Congress, the top mobile telecom trade fair (to 28)

BRUSSELS: EU agriculture ministers meet (and 26)

DOHA: Verdict in appeal trial of poet Mohammed al-Ajami, jailed for life for incitement against the Qatari regime

GENEVA: 22nd session of the Human Rights Council (to March 22)

LONDON: British interior minister Theresa May appeals decision to allow radical Abu Qatada, wanted by Jordan on terror charges, to stay in Britain

MANILA: 27th anniversary of dictator Ferdinand Marcos's downfall

MASERU: Britain's Prince Harry visits his charity in Lesotho (to 27)

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana: Civil trial begins against oil giant BP, accused of negligence over the Gulf of Mexico oil spill

SEOUL: Park Geun-Hye inaugurated as South Korea's first female president

SINGAPORE: Government unveils national budget

Tuesday, February 26

ALMATY: Iran and the P5+1 in first meeting since June to discuss Tehran's disputed nuclear programme

BREDASDORP, South Africa: Bail application for two men charged with gang-raping and murdering a 17-year-old girl

FORT MEADE, Maryland: New preliminary hearings in Bradley Manning case (to March 1)

KHARTOUM: 10th anniversary of Darfur uprising

PARIS: Paris Pret-a-Porter Fashion Week (to March 6)

OSLO: Myanmar President Thein Sein visits

Wednesday, February 27

ACCRA: Extradition trial of Justin Kone Katinan, spokesman for former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo

BRUSSELS: European Parliament holds mini plenary session (and 28)

CAPE TOWN: South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan presents national budget to parliament

HONG KONG: Finance Minister John Tsang delivers annual budget speech

JOHANNESBURG: Britain's Prince Harry visits

LISBON: Troika of international lenders -- IMF, EU, ECB -- starts seventh evaluation of reforms introduced in exchange for 2011 bailout

VATICAN CITY: Pope Benedict XVI delivers final speech before resigning

Thursday, February 28

ATHENS: Socialist party Pasok holds congress (to March 3)

JOHANNESBURG: Court hears arguments in sentencing of Nigerian Henry Okah, convicted of deadly bombings in Nigeria (to March 4)

MOSCOW: French President Francois Hollande visits

NEW DELHI: Government to present federal budget

VATICAN CITY: Pope Benedict XVI steps down

VIENNA: Film release of "3096", chronicling Austrian kidnap victim Natascha Kampusch's eight-year cellar ordeal

Friday, March 1

JERUSALEM: Deadline set by Israel for the expulsion of a Palestinian family living in east Jerusalem

MILAN: Mediaset appeal against Silvio Berlusconi continues

Saturday, March 2

BUDAPEST: Prime Minister Viktor Orban set to name new central bank chief

LISBON: Anti-austerity demonstration

Sunday, March 3

BANGKOK: International meeting on efforts to tackle trade in endangered species (to 14)

- Bangkok gubernatorial election

CAIRO: Court to rule on legality of an Islamist-dominated assembly that drew up country's new charter

VIENNA: Regional elections in Lower Austria and Carinthia

Monday, March 4

ATHENS: Retrial of journalist accused of breach of privacy over "Lagarde List"

BRAZZAVILLE: Anniversary of deadly munitions depot explosion

BRUSSELS: Eurozone finance ministers meet

MILAN: Hearing in Rubygate trial of Silvio Berlusconi

NAIROBI: Presidential, legislative and local elections

OSLO: Number of nominees for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize announced

VIENNA: International Atomic Energy Agency's board of governors meets (to 8)

Tuesday, March 5

ANKARA: Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras visits

BEIJING: Start of annual session of the National People's Congress, China's rubber-stamp parliament

BRUSSELS: EU finance ministers meet

GENEVA: Press day ahead of the 83rd International Car Show

HANOVER, Germany: CeBIT tech fair opens (to 9)

Wednesday, March 6

ROME: Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip visit (and 7)

WARSAW: French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attend summit of Visegrad nations

Thursday, March 7

BRUSSELS: EU interior ministers meet

GENEVA: 83rd International Car Show in Geneva (to 17)

LONDON: International "Friends of Yemen" group meets

NEW YORK: Preliminary court hearing for radical Islamist preacher Abu Hamza

VIENNA: Popular referendum begins on Vienna's bid to host Olympic Games (to 9)

Friday, March 8

BRUSSELS: EU justice ministers meet

HONG KONG: Sun Hung Kai Properties co-chairmen Raymond and Thomas Kwok, among Asia's wealthiest men, to appear at court hearing on corruption charges

LONDON: British Prime Minister David Cameron's former communications director Andy Coulson and a former Rupert Murdoch aide, charged with making illegal payments to public officials, appear in court for preliminary hearing

YANGON: Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy holds first-ever national congress (to 10)

Saturday, March 9

TAIPEI: Anti-nuclear groups stage mass rallies

VALLETTA: Malta legislative elections

Sunday, March 10

FALKLAND ISLANDS: Falkland Islands residents vote in referendum on whether the archipelago should remain a British overseas territory (and 11)

Monday, March 11

AMMAN: Prince Charles and wife Camilla begin visit to Jordan, Qatar and Oman

BRUSSELS: EU foreign ministers meet

HERZLIYA, Israel: Annual security conference (to 14)

MONTREAL: Trial begins of Canadian accused murderer Luka Rocco Magnotta STOCKHOLM: Turkish President Abdullah Gul visits (to 13)

STRASBOURG: European Parliament holds plenary session (to 14)

TAIPEI: Taiwan and US reopen talks on Trade and Investment Framework Agreement

Tuesday, March 12

BELGRADE: Serbia marks 10th anniversary of assassination of reformist premier Zoran Djindjic

VIENNA: OPEC releases monthly report

- 75th anniversary of Nazi Germany's annexation of Austria

Thursday, March 14

BRUSSELS: EU heads of state meet (and 15)

Friday, March 15

SEPANG, Malaysia: South Korea's Psy performs at Future Music Festival Asia

Saturday, March 16

HARARE: Constitutional referendum in Zimbabwe

ISLAMABAD: End of current government's official mandate and national election deadline

Sunday, March 17

TUNIS: Ceremonies marking end of 40-day mourning period for assassinated opposition leader Chokri Belaid