Egypt: A policeman guarding the governor of the Central Bank was killed by masked gunmen that hijacked the governor’s car in Giza. (Xinhua)
Mali: Russia delivered a consignment of firearms to the government and is in talks to deliver additional arms and ammunition. (AFP)
Mali: French troops discovered and diffused a homemade explosive device containing 600 kg of explosive material in the northern city of Gao. (AFP)
Zimbabwe: The Chairman of the Zimbabwe Elections Commission resigned citing health reasons as crucial elections loom later this year. (AFP)
Chile: Police arrested 19 after clashes with Mapuche Indians outside a courthouse in a southern region that has been beset by arson attacks. (AP)
Colombia: The ELN freed five hostages, two Peruvians and three Colombians, taken in an attempt to push the government towards peace talks. (Reuters)
Mexico: The Nieto administration released details on the new security strategy, saying the country will spend USD9.2 billion on social programs meant to keep young people from joining criminal organizations in the 251 most violent towns and neighborhoods across the country. (AP)
United States: The Senate Armed Services Committee approved Chuck Hagel to be the country’s next Secretary of Defense by a vote of 14-11. (Reuters)
Venezuela: A Russian arms exporter said the bilateral military and technical ties between the two countries would continue no matter who held power. (Itar-Tass)
Afghanistan: Local officials said a NATO air raid killed 10 civilians, including women and children, while targeting a Taliban hideout in an eastern province. (AFP)
China: Social media users blasted the government’s relatively moderate reaction to North Korea’s nuclear test, claiming the ally had “humiliated Beijing.” (AFP)
Philippines: MILF Chairman Nur Misuari announced the organization would continue efforts to free foreign hostages held by al Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf. (AP)
Sri Lanka: A UN report accused the government of failing to honor promises to investigate human rights abuses against civilians in its civil war. (AFP)
Thailand: Scores of heavily armed gunmen stormed a military base in the south in a major assault that left at least 17 militants dead. (AFP)
Region: Greece, Italy, and Albania reached an agreement to back a proposed natural gas pipeline stretching from the Caspian Sea to Western Europe. (AP)
Cyprus: Pre-election polling suggested the right-wing opposition Disy party will garner the most votes in an election dominated by economic fears. (AFP)
Italy: A former minister in Berlusconi’s cabinet and leading candidate in the conservative party was convicted of corruption and a number of other charges, and was sentenced to four years in prison. (AP)
Russia: US President Obama vowed to work with the Kremlin to reduce both Russian and American nuclear weapon stockpiles. (AFP)
Serbia: Ambassador to Russia, Slavenko Terzic, said Serbia is not ready to recognize Kosovo’s independence for the sake of its accession to the EU. (Itar-Tass)
Turkey: Authorities detained one suspect in the investigation into an explosion on the Syrian border targeting Syrian opposition leaders that killed 14 and injured dozens. (Xinhua)
Iran: IAEA experts arrived in Tehran to resume negotiations with the government hoping to resolve disputes over its nuclear program. (Xinhua)
Israel: Human Rights Watch said Israel violated the laws of war in a series of airstrikes during an eight-day military operation last November against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. (AP)
Lebanon: FM Mansour stressed the Syrian crisis has to be solved through political dialogue among all parties without any foreign intervention. (Xinhua)
Qatar: The government handed control of the Syrian embassy in Doha to the National Coalition, Syria’s main opposition group. (AFP)
Syria: Russian arms exporters are continuing to fulfill contractual obligations to the Syrian government, delivering anti-aircraft and other defense systems. (AFP)
Yemen: Three pro-government militiamen were injured in a bomb explosion in the southern province of Abyan targeting the militia headquarters. (Xinhua)
TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS
Cybersecurity: President Obama signed an executive order seeking to improve protection for American infrastructure from cyber attacks. (Reuters)
Africa: Egypt and Tunisia will close their borders with Libya over concerns about potential militia violence surrounding the 2nd anniversary of the revolution (to 18FEB).
Europe: OSCE Internet 2013 meeting on “Shaping policies to advance media freedom” in Vienna (to 15FEB).
Europe: G20 Finance Ministers to meet in Moscow.
Bahrain: Anniversary of Shiite uprising against Sunni leaders in Bahrain – 2011.
China: Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, head of the AU Commission, is to visit China at the invitation of Chinese FM Yang Jiechi. During Zuma’s visit, she will attend the fifth China-AU strategic dialogue (to 17FEB).
India: French President Hollande will visit to India to discuss trade issues, including a USD12-billion deal for Rafale fighter jets.