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AFP Europe News Agenda

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

What's happening in Europe on Friday:

+ Cyprus debates new bailout plan

+ China's Xi begins first visit abroad in Russia

+ Sarkozy charged over illegal party donations

+ Italy moves to form new government

NICOSIA: Cyprus MPs begin debate from 0800 GMT on a series of bills that aim to overhaul the banking sector and raise the funds the island urgently needs to secure an international bailout and avoid financial meltdown. Picture. Graphic. Video. (CYPRUS-ECONOMY-EU-FINANCE)

In Moscow, European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso meets President Vladimir Putin at 0600 GMT on the second day of talks in Moscow that touch on the Cyprus banking crisis. Press conference at 0830 GMT. Picture (RUSSIA-EU-ECONOMY-FINANCE)

MOSCOW: China's new leader Xi Jinping meets Russian President Vladimir Putin at 1000 GMT at the start of his first trip abroad, which highlights the two giant neighbours' desire to more closely coordinate their diplomatic efforts and trade. Arrival around 0800 GMT. Picture. Video (RUSSIA-CHINA-POLITICS)

BORDEAUX, France: Former president Nicolas Sarkozy has been charged with taking financial advantage of France's richest woman, as part of a probe into illegal party funding that could shatter his hopes of a political comeback. Picture. Video. (FRANCE-POLITICS-SARKOZY)

ROME: President Giorgio Napolitano will give a mandate to an Italian politician to form a government after last month's elections. Picture. Video. No timings announced. (ITALY-POLITICS)

-- OTHER ITEMS --

VATICAN CITY: Latin America's first pope meets world ambassadors at the Vatican from 1000 GMT to discuss international issues. (VATICAN-RELIGION-POPE)

DUBLIN: European foreign ministers open at 1200 GMT a two-day meeting to consider calls to open up weapons deliveries to Syrian rebels. Picture. Video (SYRIA-CONFLICT-EU-DIPLOMACY)

MOSCOW: A Moscow court resumes at 0700 GMT the tax evasion trial of the late lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who died in custody after exposing an alleged $230 million state fraud scheme. (RUSSIA-POLITICS-TRIAL-RIGHTS)

GENEVA: The UN Human Rights Council wraps up its month-long sitting, with votes expected on resolutions, including on the extension of a UN probe into rights abuses in Syria and on the appointment of an independent expert on Mali. Session starts at 0800 GMT. (UN-RIGHTS)

BUDAPEST: Hungarian far-right Jobbik party holds a rally at 1700 GMT outside a football stadium for a World Cup qualifier against Romania. FIFA has ordered that the game be played in an empty stadium because of anti-Semitic abuse by fans in a friendly against Israel in August. Picture. (FBL-FIFA-HUN-RACISM)

BERLIN: Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki wraps two-day visit to Berlin with talks at 0930 GMT with Chancellor Angela Merkel as Germany seeks to boost support for the birthplace of the Arab Spring revolutions. Picture (GERMANY-TUNISIA-DIPLOMACY)

FRANKFURT: The widely watched Ifo business climate index, which has risen strongly in recent months, could stall this month as weak economic data, political gridlock in Italy and the Cyprus crisis begin to sour business confidence in Europe's top economy. Data scheduled for release at 0900 GMT. (GERMANY-ECONOMY-BUSINESS-CONFIDENCE-INDEX-IFO)

WARSAW: Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych discusses his country's drive for EU membership in talks with Hungarian President Janos Ader and Poland's head of state Bronislaw Komorowski at 1850 GMT. Joint news conference with Komorowski and Ader at 1140 GMT. Picture (POLAND-UKRAINE-HUNGARY-DIPLOMACY)

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130322/afp-europe-news-agenda