Current Affairs search results for tag: international-news
By admin: Dec. 15, 2021

1. India votes against UN draft resolution on climate change

Tags: International News

  • India voted against a draft resolution at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) linking climate to security. This resolution was moved by Niger, which holds the UNSC presidency for December. It was also sponsored by Ireland.
  • Niger organized a debate titled ‘Maintenance of international peace and security: security in the context of terrorism and climate change”. One of the objectives of the debate was to examine how terrorism and security risks could be linked to climate change.
  • The resolution was vetoed by Russia even though 12 countries voted in its favour with China abstaining from the vote and India voting against it.

India’s views

 Government of India’s views was put forward by India’s Permanent Representative and Ambassador to the United Nations, T.S. Tirumurti. According to him 

  • It was an attempt to shift climate talks from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to the Security Council and a “step backward” for collective action on the issue.
  • As per India, the reason countries were attempting to bring climate talks to the Security Council was that decisions could be taken as per the will of a few states who can veto any resolution  without consensus or the involvement of most developing countries, which is clearly neither desirable nor acceptable.
  • The draft resolution, as per India, would undermine progress made at Glasgow, where the latest round of talks under the UNFCCC, the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26), concluded in November.

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC)

  • It is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations (UN), charged with ensuring international peace and security, recommending the admission of new UN members to the General Assembly, and approving any changes to the UN Charter.
  • Its powers include establishing peacekeeping operations, enacting international sanctions, and authorizing military action. 
  • Under the Charter of the United Nations, all Member States are obligated to comply with Council decisions.
  • The Security Council consists of fifteen members, of which five are permanent:
  • The People's Republic of China, 
  • The French Republic, 
  • The Russian Federation, 
  • The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and 
  • The United States of America.
  • Permanent members can veto any substantive resolution
  • The remaining ten members are elected on a regional basis to serve a term of two years. 
  • The body's presidency rotates monthly among its members.
  • The current temporary members are-
  • Estonia (2021)
  • India (2022)
  • Ireland (2022)
  • Kenya (2022)
  • Mexico (2022)
  • Niger (2021)
  • Norway (2022)
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (2021)
  • Tunisia (2021)
  • Viet Nam (2021)


The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

  • UNFCCC established an international environmental treaty to combat "dangerous human interference with the climate system", in part by stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere. It is highly targeted towards sustainable development.
  • It was signed by 154 states at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), informally known as the Earth Summit, held in Rio de Janeiro from 3 to 14 June 1992. 
  • The secretariat of the UNFCCC was established in Geneva in 1992 and was later shifted to Bonn, Germany in 1995.
  • The Kyoto Protocol, which was signed in 1997, was the first implementation of measures under the UNFCCC to control the emission of greenhouse gases to deal with global warming. 
  • The Kyoto Protocol came into force in 2005 and it was replaced by the Paris Agreement of 2016.

Conference of Parties(COP)

  • The COP is the supreme decision-making body of the UNFCCC. It meets annually to assess the progress made by the member countries in dealing with climate change. 
  •  The 26th COP was held at  Glasgow, Scotland, UK from 31st October to 13th November 2021.
  • The 27th COP 2022 will be held from 7th to 18th November 2022 at Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.

By admin: Dec. 14, 2021

2. “India” 4th Most Powerful Country in Asia

Tags: International News

  • In the Asia Power Index for 2021 that ranks 26 nations and territories in Asia- Pacific, prepared by the Lowy Institute of Sydney, India has been ranked 4th most powerful Asian country. 
  • The Lowy Institute ranks the country's power on the basis of 8 indicators. It includes the country’s economic capability, military capability, resilience, cultural influence, economic influences, future resources, defence network, diplomatic influence.

Rank of the powerful countries 

  1. United States  82.2 points
  2. China  74.6
  3. Japan  38.7
  4. India  37.7 
  5. Russia 33.0 

Highlights of the report:

  • India lost 2.0 points (-5% change) in overall score in 2021 (compared to 2020).
  • India performed better in future resource measures where it finished behind only the United States and China.
  • India finishes in 4th place in four other measures, i.e. Economic Capability, Military Capability (+0.5), Resilience (+1.7) and Cultural Influence.
  • India remains in the 7th place in its “Defence Networks”, reflecting progress in its regional defence diplomacy - notably with the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue which includes: Australia, Japan and the United States.
  •  On the other hand, India has slipped into 8th position for economic relationships, as it falls further behind in regional trade integration efforts.

Lowy Institute

The Lowy Institute is an independent think tank founded in April 2003 by Frank Lowy to conduct original, policy-relevant research about international political, strategic and economic issues from an Australian perspective.

Headquarters: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Executive Director: Michael Fullilove

By admin: Dec. 13, 2021

3. Israeli PM’s historic visit to UAE

Tags: International News

  • Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett arrived in the United Arab Emirates for the first ever  official visit by a Prime Minister of Israel to the UAE.
  • The UAE last year became the third Arab nation to establish full diplomatic relations with Israel after Egypt and Jordan.
  •  Bahrain and Morocco then followed as part of a series of deals referred to as Abraham Accords brokered by former U.S. President Donald Trump.
  •  Sudan also agreed to normalise ties with Israel under the Abraham Accords, but full relations have not yet materialised. 
  • For details of the Abraham accord refer to the 25 November post.

Israel

  • It was created in 1948 as a homeland of the Jews after partitioning the Arab dominated Palestine in West Asia..
  • Capital : Israel claims Jerusalem as its capital but many countries including the United Nations  do not accept it as its capital. Tel Aviv is accepted as the capital of Israel by many countries of the world.
  • Currency : Shekel
  • Parliament : Knesset 


UAE(United Arab Emirates)

  • It gained its independence from Britain in 1971 .
  • It is a federation of seven Emirates ,Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain.
  • Capital of UAE: Abu Dhabi 
  • Currency : UAE Dirham

By admin: Dec. 13, 2021

4. New Caledonia votes to remain part of France

Tags: International News

  • Voters in the French island territory of New Caledonia chose overwhelmingly to stay part of France, in a referendum  held on 12 December which was boycotted by pro-independence forces.
  • Official results showed 96% of those who took part chose to stay in France. However the overall turnout was less than 44%.
  • The referendum held on 12 December  was the third and last in a decades-long process aimed at settling tensions between native Kanaks seeking independence and those who want the territory to remain part of France.
  • New Caledonia, colonized by Napoleon’s nephew in the 19th century, is a vast archipelago of about 270,000 people east of Australia and hosts a French military base.

 Capital of New Caledonia : Noumea.

Currency: CFP Franc

By admin: Dec. 13, 2021

5. Tigray rebels retake Ethiopian world heritage Lalibela

Tags: International News

Tigray rebels on 12th December recaptured the north Ethiopian town of Lalibela, home to a UNESCO world heritage site from the  Ethiopian government  forces..

Ethiopian Civil War

The conflict started on 4 November, when the  Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered a military offensive against  the northern regional forces in Tigray.

The escalation came after months of feuding between Mr Abiy's government and leaders of Tigray's dominant political party, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) .

For almost three decades, the party was at the centre of power, before it was sidelined by Mr Abiy, who took office in 2018 after anti-government protests.

Mr Abiy pursued reforms, but when Tigray resisted, the political crisis erupted into war.

Lalibela

Lalibela is a town in the Amhara Region of Ethiopia. It is famous for its rock-cut monolithic churches. It is a holy pilgrimage site for Christians.  The Rock-Hewn Churches were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978

Ethiopia (Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia) - 

  • A landlocked country in the horn of Africa. 
  • Capital - Addis Ababa
  • Currency - Birr
  • Lake Tana in the North is the source of Blue Nile

Abiy Ahmed - He is the present prime minister of Ethiopia. As the first Ethiopian and the first African head of state, he won the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize for his work in ending the 20-year post-war territorial stalemate between Ethiopia and Eritrea.

Horn of Africa

  • The Horn of Africa takes its name from the horn-shaped land formation that forms the easternmost point of the African continent, projecting into the Indian Ocean south of the Arabian Peninsula. 
  • The term is also used to refer to the greater region of adjacent countries located at the southern end of the Red Sea and on the Gulf of Aden: the Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti, Somalia and the landlocked Ethiopia.
  • Located on the main shipping route for the transport of oil from the Persian Gulf to Europe and the United States, the Horn of Africa is considered one of the most strategically important regions in the world.

By admin: Dec. 13, 2021

6. Saudi Arabia bans Tablighi Jamaat

Tags: International News

Saudi Arabia has stunned the Islamic World by banning the Tablighi Jamaat, the Islamist proselytizing(conversion) movement. 

The Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs announced the measure on its social media platform terming the Sunni Islamic organisation as "one of the gates of terrorism" and that Tablighi Jamaat poses "a danger to society".

Tablighi Jamaat

  • Tablighi Jamaat , which literally means a society for spreading the faith, is a Sunni Islamic missionary movement. The proselytising movement aims to reach out to ordinary Muslims and revive their faith, particularly in matters of ritual, dress, and personal behaviour. 
  • It was launched by Deoband cleric and prominet Islamic scholar Maulana Muhammad Ilyas Khandhalaw in 1927 in Mewat,Haryana.
  • After Partition in 1947, a Pakistan chapter was started in the town of Raiwind, Lahore. Currently, Bangladesh has one of the largest chapters. The Tablighi Jamaat also has a significant base in the United States and Britain, which has a large Indian subcontinent diaspora. It also has a presence in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore.
  • Its roots lie in the Deobandi version of the Hanafi school of jurisprudence.
  • Salafism, which is sometimes also referred to as Wahhabism which is practised in Saudi Arabia  is a rival of the Deobandi school and this move of the Saudi is seen as a rivalry within the Sunni Islam. 

Saudi Arabia 

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the largest state in West Asia and a major oil exporting country in the world.

 Saudi Arabia claims to be the leader of the islamic world as it is home to the two most holy mosques of Islam.  

Al-Masjid al-Haram mosque is in  Mecca, which is also the world's largest mosques  and Al-Masjid an-Nabawi in Medina

The Organisation of Islamic Countries(OIC) headquarters is at Jeddah ,Saudi Arabia.

Capital of Saudi Arabia : RIyadh 

Currency :Saudi Riyal

By admin: Dec. 12, 2021

7. India to supply medicines to the Afghan people

Tags: International News

  • The Government of India has joined Qatar, the UAE, Turkmenistan and Pakistan that have sent humanitarian support to Taliban-ruled Afghanistan.
  • India has sent medical relief material to the Indira Gandhi Children Hospital in Kabul.
  • This is the first time that India has sent humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan after the Taliban took over Kabul by dislodging the government of President Ashraf Ghani in August.
  • The medical relief material will be handed to the WHO (World Health Organisation ) in Kabul as the Indian does not recognise the Taliban government in Kabul led by Habitullah Akhunzada .
  • The relief material was sent back by special   Kam Air flights  that had  brought 10 Indians and 94 Afghan minority community members from Afghanistan to India. 
  • As part of the Operation Devi Shakti, which was launched in August to evacuate Indians and Afghan minority community members from the strife torn country, the Government has evacuated a total of 669 people from Afghanistan. This includes 448 Indians who were working on various projects and businesses and 206 Afghan nationals.

By admin: Dec. 12, 2021

8. G-7 Foreign and Development Ministers Meeting

Tags: International News

  •  The United Kingdom, which is currently the chairman of the Group of 7 countries, hosted the foreign ministers meeting  of the member countries at Liverpool in England . 
  •  It will be held on 11-12 December 2021.
  • The meeting  was held in the midst of concern that Russia is going to attack Ukraine which is denied by Russia.
  • The Foreign Ministers of India, European Union, Australia, South Korea, along with representatives from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN}  will take part in G-7 foreign ministers as guests.

G-7  or Group of Seven 

  • It is a group of the wealthiest, industrialised and liberal democracies in the world.
  • It includes United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, United States, Canada
  • Russia was made a member of the group in 1998 but was expelled in 2014 after its occupation of Crimea ,which is a part of Ukraine. 

History of  G-7

  •  In 1975 France hosted the first summit meeting which was attended by 6 leaders of the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Japan, Germany and the United States.
  • In 1976 Canada was made the member of the group and it was converted into G-7 
  • Russia was made a member of the group in 1998 and it was converted into G-8      but  Russia was expelled in 2014 after its occupation of Crimea ,which is a part of Ukraine.

Forthcoming Summits

  • The current Chairman of the group is United Kingdom
  • The 48th Summit meeting 2022 will be  held in  Germany 
  • The 49th Summit meeting 2023 will be held in Japan 
  • The 50th Summit meeting 2024 will be held in Italy 

By admin: Dec. 11, 2021

9. UN General Assembly Grants Observer Status To International Solar Alliance

Tags: International News

  • The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) has granted Observer Status to International Solar Alliance (ISA), India's Permanent Ambassador to the United Nations.
  • A total of 108 countries participated in the Assembly, including 74 Member Countries and 34 Observer and Prospective Countries, 23 Partner Organizations and 33 Special Invitee Organisations.
  • The launch of the ISA was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and former French President Francois Hollande in November 2015, at the 21st session of the UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties in Paris, France.
  • In 6 years, the International Solar Alliance has become an example of positive global climate action through partnerships to benefit global energy growth and development.

Observer Status

Observer status is a privilege granted by some organizations to non-members to give them an ability to participate in the organization's activities. Observer status is often granted by intergovernmental organizations (IGO) to non-member parties and international nongovernmental organizations (INGO) that have an interest in the IGO's activities. 


United Nations General Assembly (UNGA)

The United Nations General Assembly is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations, serving as the main deliberative, policymaking, and representative organ of the UN.

Responsibilities of UNGA includes:

  • preparing the UN budget
  • appointing the non-permanent members to the Security Council
  • appointing the Secretary-General of the United Nations
  • receiving reports from other parts of the UN system
  • making recommendations through resolutions.

It also establishes numerous subsidiary organs to advance or assist in its broad mandate.

Headquarters: New York, United States

President: Abdulla Shahid

Convened: 10 January 1946

India’s Permanent Ambassador to the UN, T S Tirumurti.


International Solar Alliance

The International Solar Alliance (ISA) is an alliance of 124 countries initiated by India, most of them being the sunshine countries, which lie either completely or partly between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn. 

The primary objective of the alliance:

  • to work for efficient consumption of solar energy to reduce dependence on fossil fuels.
  • to endorse clean energy, sustainable environment, public transport and climate

Formation: 30 November 2015

Headquarters: Gurugram, Haryana, India

Director General: Ajay Mathur

By admin: Dec. 11, 2021

10. PM Modi Addresses Democracy Summit

Tags: International News

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a virtual address on 10th December 2021 at the Summit for Democracy, hosted by U.S. President Joe Biden, that Democracies should jointly deal with social media and cryptocurrencies.

The PM further added that, we all need to constantly improve our democratic practices and systems. And, we all need to continuously enhance inclusion, transparency, human dignity, responsive grievance redressal and decentralization of power.

In this context, today's assembly provides a timely platform for furthering cooperation among democracies. India would be happy to share its expertise in holding free and fair elections, and in enhancing transparency in all areas of governance through innovative digital solutions. We must also jointly shape global norms for emerging technologies like social media and crypto-currencies, so that they are used to empower democracy, not to undermine it.

For more information about the Democracy Summit, see news of 10th December.