AFP Americas News Agenda for March 20

Duty Editor: Jim Mannion

Tel: + 1 202 414 0541

What's happening in the Americas on Wednesday:

+ Fed concludes two-day monetary policy meeting

WASHINGTON: The Federal Reserve wraps up a two-day Federal Open Market Committee monetary policy meeting, widely expected to maintain the central bank's ultra-loose monetary policy. Statement expected at 1800 GMT, followed by news conference with Chairman Ben Bernanke at 1830 GMT. (US-ECONOMY-BANK-RATE)


LOS ANGELES: Trial of Christian Gerhartsreiter, a German accused of killing his ex-landlord in 1985 and passing himself off as a member of the storied Rockefeller family. Coverage on merit. File Picture. (US-CRIME-MURDER-GERMAN)

WASHINGTON: US envoy to Syria Robert Ford testifies to the House Foreign Affairs Committee on the crisis in Syria. 1345 GMT. Expect coverage. (SYRIA-CONFLICT-US-POLITICS)

-- General John Kelly, the new head of US Southern Command, which oversees American forces operating in Latin America, holds a news conference at the Pentagon. 1900 GMT. Coverage on merit. (US-LatAm-military)

-- Arianespace chief Jean-Yves Le Gall visits Washington. 1800 GMT. (US-EUROPE-AEROSPACE)

-- Festivities kick off in Washington marking the start of the US capital's cherry blossom festival. Picture. (US-JAPAN-TOURISM-FESTIVAL)