International Current Affairs
October 2012 International Current Affairs Part-IV
Category : International Current Affairs
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 Aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov will be handed over towards the end of next year, Russia said on10 October as India conveyed its "serious concern" over the prolonged delay and asked it to adopt a "wartime approach" for ensuring its early delivery. The issue came up at a meeting here between Defence Minister AK Antony and his Russian counterpart Anatoly Serdyukov during which Moscow said the 45,000-tonne aircraft carrier had suffered a "big malfunction" in its engine and could be handed over only in "fourth quarter of 2013". 

India had signed the contract for buying the second-hand warship, now rechristened INS Vikramaditya, in 2004 and it was supposed to be delivered in 2009. Due to recurring escalation in price, it was rescheduled to be delivered in December this year but the present problem has pushed it back by almost one more year. "We have handed over the revised overhaul and transfer schedule to the Indian side and we believe that transfer of the ship will take place in the 4th quarter of the 2013," Serdyukov told reporters at the joint press conference after the meeting of the India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military-Technical Cooperation (IR-IGMTC). 
Global Hunger Report 2012: India ranked at 65th position:
The report on Global Hunger Index for seventh year was released on 11 October 2012 by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Welthungerhilfe, and Concern Worldwide. The basic theme of the report for the 2012 Global Hunger Index -- The Challenge of Hunger: Ensuring Sustainable Food Security under Land, Water, and Energy Stresses. IFPRI that calculated the global hunger Index analysed the measures based upon multidimensional angles. The published report have shown a proportional growth in hunger reduction of people worldwide but recorded the progress speed was tragically slow and alarming. The report in its findings recorded twenty countries across the world mainly from South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa to be highly alarming and have highest level of hunger, and showcased the sufferings of millions of poor. As per the report, the nations that had showcased an absolute progress between 1990 Global Hunger Index to 2012 Global Hunger Index were Bangladesh, Angola, Malawi, Nicaragua, Ethiopia, Niger, and Vietnam. Whereas there are 15 countries that have managed to reduce it by 50 percent or more. As per the report, India instead of its fast paced economic growth in past two decades has lagged behind in improving its record in Global Hunger Index chart. In the list of 79 countries in the global Hunger Index, India was ranked 65th behind China that was placed at 2nd place position, Pakistan at 57th and Sri Lanka at 37th position. The report also points out the three countries Bangladesh, India and Timor-Leste constitutes to the highest occurrence of underweight children under the age group of five years, which records to more than 40 percent in each country. India was ranked second with 43.5 percent of the children less than five underweight in the list of the 129 countries compared for underweight child, after Timor-Leste. Countries like Ethiopia, Niger, Nepal and Bangladesh followed the chart. 
Radical preacher Abu Hamza al-Masri and four other terror suspects were extradited on 5 October from the UK after Britain`s high court ruled they had no more grounds for appeal in their year’s long battles to avoid facing charges in the United States. Scotland Yard said the suspects had been brought to an air force base in eastern England from Long Lartin Prison, where two planes provided by US authorities were waiting to fly them to America. 
At least 46 students were killed and several others injured when unidentified gunmen wearing military uniform attacked a hostel in northern Nigeria on 3 october. The massacre has taken place on Nigeria`s 52nd Independence celebration. police sources said gunmen invaded the hostel of Mubi Polytechnic in northern state of Adamawa, killing 46 students. A lecturer said that the gunmen wore military attire and told the students to identify themselves by name.
Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili conceded defeat on 1 October, in parliamentary polls that handed a victory to an opposition coalition led by billionaire tycoon Bidzina Ivanishvili.Although Saakashvili remains president, the defeat of his United National Movement to Ivanishvili`s Georgian Dream coalition in the elections spells the end of his nine years of largely unchallenged dominance over Georgia.
United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and Help Age International report said India`s population is likely to increase by 60 per cent between 2000 and 2050 but the number of elders, who have attained 60 years of age will go up by 360 per cent and the government should start framing policies. The report says,"India has around 100 million elderly at present and the number is expected to increase to 323 million, constituting 20 per cent of the total population, by 2050" .The UNFPA in its study in India, which was conducted in seven states, found that around one-fifth of the elderly live alone or with spouses only in both rural and urban areas. According to the report, by 2050, India and China will have about 80 per cent of the world`s elderly living there, and India is likely to pip China in the number of centenarians.

 Six years after the formal end of the civil war, Nepal’s “peace process” has concluded with the integration of a little over 1,450 former Maoist fighters into the Nepal Army (NA). The cantonments where the former combatants of the Maoist People’s Liberation Army (PLA) resided have closed down, Maoist weapons are under state control, and the PLA has ceased to exist ending the state of “one country, two Armies”. Over the past five years, there has been a gradual reduction in the number of combatants in the cantonments. About 32,000 individuals had initially registered in the camps in early 2007. But the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) verified only 19,602 of those as combatants and disqualified over 4,000 persons for being under-age or joining the Maoist Army after the ceasefire began. The “disqualified” were discharged from the cantonments in early 2010. In November 2011, a seven-point agreement was signed between the parties, which stipulated that a maximum of 6,500 former combatants could be integrated in a specially created general directorate under the NA. In April 2012, the Nepal Army had also taken charge of the cantonments as well as containers that included over 3,000 Maoist weapons. 

The Indian Union Cabinet on 3 October, approved the ratification of the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing signed by India. The Nagoya Protocol has been signed by 92 countries. Five countries have also ratified the Protocol. India signed the Nagoya Protocol on May 11, 2011. The country is hosting the eleventh CoP to the CBD in Hyderabad this month. India is one of the identified mega diverse countries rich in biodiversity. With only 2.4 per cent of the earth`s land area, it accounts for 7-8 per cent of the recorded species of the world. It is also rich in associated traditional knowledge, which is both coded as in ancient texts of Indian systems of medicines such as Ayurveda, Unani and Sidha, and also non-coded, as it exists in oral undocumented traditions. The genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge can be used to develop a wide range of products and services for human benefit, such as medicines, agricultural practices, and cosmetics. India is a Party to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) which is one of the agreements adopted during the Rio Earth Summit held in 1992. One of the three objectives of the CBD relates to Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS), which refers to the way in which genetic resources may be accessed, and benefits resulting from their use shared by users with countries that provide them. The CBD prescribes that access to genetic resources is subject to national legislation. Accordingly, India after extensive consultative process had enacted the Biological Diversity Act in 2002 for giving effect to the provisions of the CBD, including those relating to CBD. However, in the near absence of user country measures, once the resource leaves the country providing the resources, there is no way to ensure compliance of ABS provisions in the country where it is used. Towards this, a protocol on access and benefit sharing has been negotiated under the aegis of CBD, and adopted by the Tenth Conference of Parties (CoP-10) held in Nagoya, Japan in October 2010.India has participated actively and contributed meaningfully in the ABS negotiations which formally started about six years back. The objective of the Nagoya Protocol on ABS is fair and equitable sharing of benefits, arising from the use of genetic resources, including by appropriate access to genetic resources and by appropriate transfer of relevant technologies. 
Japan PM reshuffles cabinet, names new finance minister:
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda reshuffled his cabinet on 1 October, naming Koriki Jojima, a senior member of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), as new finance minister. Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba was among heavyweight names keeping their posts in the reshuffle as Noda looks to move past a damaging row with China and boost his flagging popularity. The reshuffle came, as the prime minister`s poll numbers remain dreary after a costly battle over legislation to double sales tax. Noda elevated Makiko Tanaka to the cabinet as new education minister, a woman with pro-Beijing credentials reflecting her father`s status as the prime minister who normalised ties with China in 1972.