1. External Affairs Ministry to organize the International Lusophone Festival in Goa from 03-06 December 2022
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in partnership with Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR) and the Government of Goa is organizing the International Lusophone Festival in Goa from 03-06 December 2022.
The International Lusophone Festival will be inaugurated on 03 December 2022 by Pramod Sawant, Chief Minister of Goa and Smt Meenakashi Lekhi, Minister of State for External Affairs and Minister of State for Culture would be the Guest of Honour.
What is Lusophone World?
The Lusophone world are countries that speak Portuguese as their official language and were colonized by Portugal. With 300 million speakers, Portuguese is the sixth most spoken language on the planet.
The Portuguese speaking countries set up the ‘Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP)’, in 1996.
The member countries of the CPLP are Angola, Brazil, Cabo Verde, Guinea Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal, Sao Tome and Principe, Timor Leste and Equatorial Guinea.
India joined CPLP as an associate observer in July 2021. As part of India’s engagement with CPLP, the Ministry of External Affairs celebrated the World Portuguese Language Day in Delhi on 05 May 2022, soon after joining CPLP.
Goa was also a colony of Portugal and it was liberated by the Indian government in 1961 through an action of the armed forces code named Operation Vijay.
2. ASEAN agrees to admit Timor- Leste as its 11th member
The 10 nations group Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has agreed in principle to admit Timor- Leste as its 11th member. This was declared by the ASEAN after its summit meeting held in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh on 11 November 2022 Timor- Leste applied for membership of the ASEAN in 2011.
The other members of ASEAN are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
Timor- Leste will be initially granted an observer status at a high level ASEAN meeting and it will take years before it becomes a full member of the ASEAN group.
The country would be the first new member of the regional grouping in more than two decades, since Cambodia was admitted in 1999.
Timor- Leste President Jose Ramos-Horta welcomed the decision, saying a membership would strengthen wider diplomatic relations with ASEAN's partners and will help attract more foreign direct investment in the country.
It was earlier called East Timor and was a Portuguese colony till 1975 .After the Portuguese left it was occupied by Indonesia. The people of Timor- Leste waged a freedom struggle to gain Independence from Indonesia.
In the 1999 United Nations supervised referendum the people of Timor-Leste voted for Independence from Indonesia.
It was officially recognised as an independent country by the United Nations in 2022, making it Asia's youngest country.
Capital of Timor- Leste: Dilli
President: Jose Ramos-Horta
3. Indian Ocean Naval Symposium:
Why in the News?
The 7th edition of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) Conclave of Chiefs was hosted by the French Navy at Paris from 15th-16th Nov 2021.
- Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command, is leading a two member Indian Naval delegation for this Conclave.
- The Conclaves of Chiefs is being attended by Chiefs of Navies/ Heads of Lead Maritime Agencies of IONS nations.
- Various bilateral interactions were also conducted on the side-lines of the Conclaves to facilitate a greater degree of maritime cooperation and understanding between the IONS nations.
- The 7th edition of IONS Symposium was held at Le-Reunion from 28 Jun - 01 Jul 21 in hybrid format due to COVID protocols.
- During the Symposium, it was agreed upon to conduct the extant Conclave of Chiefs at Paris.
- The Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) is a series of biennial meetings, held between the littoral states of the Indian Ocean region.
- The inaugural edition of IONS was held in Feb 2008 at New Delhi, with the Indian Navy as the Chair for two years.
- UAE: 2010-12
- South Africa: 2012-14
- Australia: 2014-16
- Bangladesh: 2016-18
- Islamic Republic of Iran: 2018-21.
- As a forum which seeks to enhance maritime cooperation among Navies of the littoral states of the Indian Ocean Region by providing an open and inclusive platform for discussions on regionally relevant maritime issues that would lead to common understanding on the way ahead.
- The IONS acts as a security construct for the Indian Ocean region and apart from its series of symposiums, it conducts numerous other activities like workshops, essay competitions and lectures to promote its objective.
- The IONS is a voluntary and inclusive initiative that brings together navies of Indian Ocean Region (IOR) littoral states to increase maritime co-operation and enhance regional security.
- It also serves to develop an effective response mechanism and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) against natural disasters.
- There are 36 littoral in the Indian Ocean which have been geographically grouped into the following four sub-regions:
- South Asian : Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Pakistan, Seychelles, Sri Lanka.
- West Asian: Iran, Oman, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, Yemen
- East African: France, Kenya, Mauritius, Mozambique
- South Africa: Tanzania, Djibouti, Egypt, Eriteria, Comoros, Madagascar, Somalia, Sudan
- South East Asian and Australian: Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, Timor Leste
Why is it important For India?
- It will help India to consolidate its sphere of influence from the Straits of Malacca to Hormuz.
- IONS can be used to counterbalance the increasing presence of China in the region.
- It will Strengthening and deepening the relations with the Indian Ocean littoral states.