1. Middle East
For the first time since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, two Iranian warships have travelled through the Suez Canal. In a mission that Israel described as a "provocation", the ships were heading for a Syrian port for a training exercise via Israel's Mediterranean coast
A military court in the Democratic Republic of Congo investigating a case of mass rape has sentenced Lieutenant Colonel Kibibi Mutware to 20 years in jail for crimes against humanity. Forty-nine women testified. It was the first conviction of a commanding officer for rape in an area where sexual violence is endemic.
Ahead of his 80th birthday, Mikhail Gorbachev hit out at the erosion of democracy in Russia. Criticising the prime minister, Vladimir Putin, Gorbachev said: "It's a shame that our modern leaders aren't very modern."
At least 65 people have died after a 6.3-magnitude earthquake struck Christchurch, New Zealand. The death toll is expected to rise. The prime minister, John Key, said: "We may be witnessing New Zealand's darkest day."
The British street artist Banksy has been refused permission to appear in disguise at the Oscars. Organisers fear that it would allow imposters to gatecrash the ceremony. The artist, well known for his carefully guarded anonymity, is up for Best Documentary for his debut feature film, Exit Through the Gift Shop.
Muhammad Yunus, the Nobel Prize-winning economist and so-called father of microfinance, could be ousted from Grameen Bank, which he founded to help the poor in Bangladesh. The prime minister, Sheikh Hasina, has accused the bank of "sucking blood from the poor".
The final line-up of the 29 teams competing for the £18.5m Lunar-X moon-exploration prize has been confirmed. The organisers, whose backers include Google, hope to spur the development of low-cost robotic space exploration. They believe that privately funded groups will, in future, drive the innovations in the sector.
John Beddington, chief scientific adviser to the UK government, has warned that solar storms could have bad effects on systems such as GPS. Solar storms start with a burst of electromagnetic radiation that, when it reaches earth, ionises the planet's outer atmosphere. While the ground would be safe, satellites and power grids would be affected.
Bunhill Fields Cemetery in central London, final resting place of some of the biggest names in English literature (including Daniel Defoe and William Blake), is to be given Grade I protected status.
Doctors have warned that poor alcohol regulation could cost up to 250,000 lives in England and Wales over the next 20 years. Writing in the Lancet, leading liver disease specialists said that the coalition government was "too close" to the drinks industry, and called for urgent measures such as a minimum unit price and stricter marketing guidelines.