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PT 2017: Current Affairs


at a glance (International
Issues)
Jun 14, 2017

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1. New Delhi Declaration On


Education

The BRICS nations have adopted


the New Delhi Declaration on
Education to ensure inclusive and
equitable quality education and
promote life-long
learning opportunities for all.
It was adopted at the 4th Meeting
of BRICS Ministers of Education in
New Delhi.

2. BIMSTECH : Goa Summit

Held in Goa in October 2016.


The next meeting will be held in
Nepal for the Fourth BIMSTEC
Summit in 2017.
The Bay of Bengal Initiative for
Multi-Sectoral Technical and
Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is
aregional organization.
It came into being on 6 June 1997
through the Bangkok Declaration.
It comprises of seven Member
States lying in the littoral and
adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal.
Five deriving from South Asia,
including Bangladesh, Bhutan,
India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Two
from Southeast Asia, including
Myanmar and Thailand.

3. EIGHTH BRICS SUMMIT

The Eighth BRICS Summit, held at


Goa under the theme "Building
Responsive, Inclusive and Collective
Solutions.
Ninth BRICS Summit will be hosted
by China in 2017
It was established in2009.
Originally it was known as BRIC
before the inclusion of South Africa
in 2011.
The first formal summit was held in
Yekaterinburg, Russia.
They are distinguished by their
large, fast-growing economies and
significant influence on regional and
global affairs.
BRICS have agreed to set up an
independent rating agency based
on market-oriented principles in
order to further strengthen the
global governance architecture.
There are concerns that the
methodologies of the big three
global agencies- S&P Global
Ratings, Fitch Ratings and Moodys
Investors Service- is biased against
developing countries, reflected by
their poor rating f these economies
Under the present pricing model of
rating agencies, the company or
institution issuing bonds pays the
rating agency to be rated, known as
issuer-pays model. This is an ethical
issue of moral hazard in this model
of rating
DISCUSS: NDB

About NDB:

It is a multilateral development
bank operated by the BRICS states
(Brazil, Russia, India, China and
South Africa). It is seen as an
alternative to the existing US-
dominated World Bank and
International Monetary Fund.
The New Development Bank was
agreed to by BRICS leaders at the
5th BRICS summit held in Durban,
South Africa in 2013.
The bank is set up to foster greater
financial and development
cooperation among the five
emerging markets.
The bank will be headquartered in
Shanghai, China.
Voting: Unlike the World Bank,
which assigns votes based on
capital share, in the New
Development Bank each participant
country will be assigned one vote,
and none of the countries will have
veto power.
It will mobilise resources for
infrastructure and sustainable
development projects in BRICS and
other emerging economies and
developing countries, to supplement
existing efforts of multilateral and
regional financial institutions for
global growth and development.

4. Commonwealth: Maldives Quits

It an international association
established in 1949 consisting of
the UK together with states that
were previously part of the British
Empire, and dependencies.
Many countries from Africa, the
Americas, Asia, Europe and the
Pacific have joined
theCommonwealth, current
membership--52 counties.
Membership is based on free and
equal voluntaryco-operation.
The last two countries to join The
Commonwealth are Rwanda and
Mozambique.

5. ICC: Burundi, South Africa and


Gambia have quit ICC. Kenya and
Uganda now, intend to follow the suit.

It is the worlds first legal body with


permanent international jurisdiction
to prosecute genocide, crimes
against humanity and war crimes
The 124-member ICC is based in
The Hague
South Africa the first state to quit
the 1998

ICJ
In News:Rejected Case Against
India:

Internal Court of Justice rejected a case


filed by the Marshall Islands against
India, Pakistan and the UK to force them
to disarm nuclear weapons.

International Court of Justice

Established in 1945, is the principal


judicial organ of the United Nations
(UN).
The seat of the Court is at the
Peace Palace in The Hague
(Netherlands).
Of the six principal organs of the
United Nations, it is the only one
not located in New York (United
States of America).
The International Court of Justice
acts as a world court. The Court has
a dual jurisdiction .

a) It decides in accordance with


international law, disputes of a
legal nature that are submitted to
it by States (jurisdiction in
contentious cases).
b) It gives advisory opinions on
legal questions at the request of
the organs of the United Nations
or specialized agencies authorized
to make such a request (advisory
jurisdiction)

About Nuclear Non-Proliferation


Treaty:

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty


was an agreement signed in 1968
by major nuclear and non-nuclear
powers who pledged their
cooperation in controlling the
spread of nuclear technology.
It has 190 states-parties which are
classified in two categories:

a) nuclear-weapon states (NWS)


consisting of the United States,
Russia, China, France, and the
United Kingdom.
b) non-nuclear-weapon states
(NNWS).

Though it is to be noted that all


NWS and all NNWS are not
signatory to the NPT.
Number of signatory states is 93
(i.e. parties to the treaty are only
93 countries).
Under the treaty, the five NWS have
committed to pursue general and
complete disarmament, while the
NNWS have agreed to forgo
developing or acquiring nuclear
weapons.
India is not a party to Nuclear Non-
Proliferation Treaty and has stated
that NPT creates discrimination
between groups of nuclear haves
and nuclear havenots.

6.UN Human Rights Council: Russia


lost its bid to retain a seat on the UN
Human Rights Council due allegations of
war crimes in relation to its policies in
Syria.

The council is 47-member body in


based in Geneva.
It was created in 2006 to promote
human rights globally.
Members of the council work to
engage countries on improving
human rights.
They make decisions ranging from
exposing violations to
recommending that the Security
Council make a referral to the
International Criminal Court.
The council doesnt have the
authority to take action but can
exert significant pressure on the
violating country and set up special
rapporteurs with the mandate to
investigate and report human-rights
abuses.

7. RACES in NEWS:

1. Yazidis: They are Iraqi ethnic


and religious minority, who are
facing executions for
their reputation as devil
worshippers.

In news

Two Yazidi women Nadia Murad


and LamiyaAji Bashar, have won
the EUs prestigious Sakharov
human rights prize.

Sakharov Prize

The European Parliament supports


human rights through the annual
Sakharov Prize for Freedom of
Thought.

This prize is awarded to individuals


who have made an exceptional
contribution to the fight for human
rights across the globe.

2. Bru Tribe: Myanmar

3. Kokang

8. Yuan Joins Elite Club of IMF


Reserve Currencies

Chinese Yuan has been added in the


International Monetary Funds
Special Drawing Rights (SDR)
basket alongside the US dollar, the
euro, the yen and the British pound

The IMF has two criteria for including a


currency in its SDR basket its

issuing country must be a major


exporter, a sign of importance in
global commerce.
the currency must be freely
usable, meaning that it is widely
deployed in international
transactions and traded in global
markets.

What is SDR

SDR is an international type of


monetary reserve currency created
by the IMF in 1969 to operate as a
supplement to the existing foreign
exchange reserves of member
countries.
Created in response to concerns
about the limitations of goldand
dollars as the sole means of settling
international accounts, SDRs
augmentinternational liquidity by
supplementing the standard reserve
currencies
A reserve currency is currency held
by central banks and other major
financial institutions as a means to
pay off international debt
obligations, or to influence their
domestic exchange rate.
A large percentage of commodities,
such as goldand oil, are priced in
the reserve currency, causing other
countries to hold thiscurrency to
pay for these goods.

9. OBOR Initiative

Latvia became the first country in


the Baltic Sea area to sign a MoU to
link up with Chinas Belt and Road
Initiative

The initiative comprises of the Silk Road


Economic Belt and 21 Century Maritime
Silk Road.

The initiative was proposed by


President Xi Jinping in 2013.

It aims to boost connectivity and trade


across Asia,Africa and Europe. Three
main goals of China are:

Economic diversification
Political stability and the
development of a multipolar global
order

10. RCEP

RCEP raised concerns recently over


giving greater market access to
Chinese goods without gaining in
return from Chinese economy.
TPP: The newly elected US
president quit from the TTP the very
first day of his office. It is a trade
agreement among twelve Pacific
Rim countries signed on 4 February
2016. The 12 nations included
Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile,
Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New
Zealand, Peru, Singapore, US
andVietnam .

11. Japans first civilian nuclear


cooperation pact with INDIA

The deal took many years because


India was reluctant to limit its
option to carry out more atomic
weapons tests in case the need
arose. And Japan was
uncomfortable with India having a
nuclear weapons programme
outside the nuclear non-
proliferation regime.
The Agreement is a crucial
determining factor as the US-based
reactor vendors, as well as other
global nuclear reactor
manufacturers have alliances with
Japanese companies and source the
most critical equipment in a reactor
the calandria or reactor vessel
from Japanese heavy forging major
Japan Steel Works (JSW). Now,
after agreement India has direct
agreement for Cooperation in
Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy
with Japan.

12. Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and


Nepal (BBIN):

Rejected by National council of


Bhutan
Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and
Nepal (BBIN) would have paved the
way for a seamless movement of
people and goods across their
borders for the benefit and
integration of the region and its
economic development.
The BBIN framework was seen as a
conducive model of sub-regional co-
operation in the area of
Connectivity which involves
transport as well as energy.
Indias plan to single out Pakistan
by implementing the pact has
suffered a jolt by this rejection.

13. United Nations Commission on


International Trade Law

Core legal body of the United


Nations system in the field of
international trade law
stablished in 1966 with a
recognition that international trade
cooperation among States isan
important factor in the promotion of
friendly relations and, consequently,
in the maintenance of peace and
security.
Its business is the modernization
and harmonization of rules on
international business
There are 60 members in UNCITRAL
elected for six years- 14 from Asia,
14 from Africa, 10 Latin American
and Caribbean, 8 Eastern European
and 14 western European and other
states.
India is only one of eight
countries that has been a
member of UNCITRAL from its
inception, and has recently been
re-elected for a term of six
years

14. COMPREHENSIVE CONVENTION


ON INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM

CCIT, drafted by India in 1996, is a


proposed treaty which provides a
comprehensive legal framework against
teerrorism.It is yet to be adopted by the
UN General Assembly.

It includes following major objectives:

To have a universal definition of


terrorism that all 193-members of
the UNGA will adopt into their own
criminal law
To ban all terror groups and shut
down terror camps
To prosecute all terrorists under
special laws
To make cross-border terrorism an
extraditable offence worldwide

15. CERN

INDIA ASSOCIATE MEMBER,


Observer in 2004
It is best known as operator of the
Large Hadron Collider, which found
the elusive Higgs boson in2012

16. Heart of Asia Summit

India hosted the 6th Ministerial


Conference of Heart of Asia
(HoA) in Amritsar.
The Heart of Asia-Istanbul Process
was launched in 2011 and the
participating countries
includePakistan, Afghanistan,
Azerbaijan, China, India, Iran,
Kazakhstan,Kyrgyzstan, Russia,
Saudi Arabia,Tajikistan, Turkey,
Turkmenistan and the UAE.
14 member countries are supported
by 16 other countries and 12
international organizations.
The platform was floated to
encourage security, political and
economic cooperation
betweenAfghanistan and its
neighbours.

Amritsar Declaration:

State-sponsored terrorism was


identified as a key challenge and
members agreed upon a concerted
effort to dismantle all kinds of
terrorism.
Members reiterated their belief in
principles of sovereignty,
independence, territorial integrity,
sovereign equality of nations as
enshrined in the United Nations
Charter
Members expressed their
commitment to the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights.
Members called up for leveraging
the cultural heritage of the region
to drive economic and social
development.
Members consented on eliminating
non-tariff barriers to trade.
Members concerned about the
increase in production and
cultivation of opium in Afghanistan,
the volume of drug trafficking and
demand in the HoA Region and
beyond.

17. Connect Central ASIA POLICY

VISITS OF CENTRAL ASIA

The Connect Central Asia policy


(CCAP) was first unveiled by India
in 2012 to fast-track Indias
relations with the Central Asian
Republics (CAR)
Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan,
Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and
Kazakhstan.

Connect Central Asia policy,


is based on pro-active political,
economic and people-to-people
engagement with Central Asian
countries, both individually
and collectively.
The policy calls for setting up
universities, hospitals,
information technology
(IT) centers, an e-network in
telemedicine connecting India to
the CARs, joint commercial
ventures, improving air
connectivity to boost trade and
tourism, joint scientific research
and strategic partnerships in
defense and security affairs.

Indias Connect Central Asia Policy


is consonant with the overall
policy of deepening engagement
in Eurasia.

18. Raisina dialogue

The second edition of the Raisina


Dialogue tackled the theme of The
New Normal: Multilateralism with
Multipolarity.

It is envisioned as Indias flagship


conference of geopolitics and geo-
economics.
It was held jointly by Ministry of
External Affairs and the Observer
Research Foundation (ORF),
an independent think tank.
The first edition of the conference
was held in March 2016 with the
theme Asian Connectivity

19. 14th PBD

The theme of 2017 PBD was


Redefined Engagement with Indian
Diaspora.
Launched in 2003, it is an annual
event to step up India's
engagement with its diaspora and
NRIs andPersons of India origins,
the govt. decided to make PBD a
biennial event last year

20.Investor-State Dispute
Settlement (ISDS) mechanism.

The EU and Canada backed


investment pact
it permits companies to drag
governments to international
arbitration without exhausting the
local remedies
It also allows companies to claim
huge amounts as compensation
citing losses they suffered due to
reasons, including policy changes.

21. WTO:WTO Director General


Roberto Azevdo visited India.

December 2017 Ministerial


Conference (MC) in Argentina
Dispute on: a permanent solution to
the issue of public stock-holding for
food security purposes
New issues: electronic commerce
and investment.
DATA Localisation: An attempt to
protect privacy and security and to
promote economic growth, some
governments have taken troubling
measures to require that data be
stored, processed, or handled within
their borders

22.Operation Sankat Mochan:in


July 2016 to evacuate nationals caught
in the escalating civil war in south
sudan.

23. Palestine:Israel passed a law that


would retroactively legalise Jewish
settlements on privately owned
Palestinian land.

24. Moscow Conference

The six nations namely India,


Russia, China, Pakistan, Iran and
Afghanistan have convened in
Moscow, Russia to ponder upon the
crisis of instability and under-
development in Afghanistan.
Meeting would not be able to bring
Taliban to the negotiating table but
the involvement of Russia in the
Afghanistans affairs is an important
MPPSC Study Material
step for the development of the
region.
All the six countries agreed on the
conditionality for engagement with
the Taliban which include giving up
violence, abiding by Afghan
constitution and cutting ties with al
Qaida.

25. .Financial Action Task Force:

plenary conference has been organized


by Financial Action Task Force from 18th
to 24th February in Paris.

First day of the meeting, the FATF


held a roundtable conference on
FinTech and RegTech (It refers to
the technology designed for the
financial institution to comply with
the complex regulations in the
sector)
counter terrorist financing was
one of the important issues
discussed.
Granted full membership to
Malaysia
In 2010, Indian became a full-
fledged member of Financial Action
Task Force (FATF), an inter-
governmental body responsible for