International Current Affairs
December 4th week 2015 current affairs
Category : International Current Affairs
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1) Construction work on the TAPI Gas Pipeline project started in Turkmenistan.

  • Construction work on the TAPI (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) Gas Pipeline project started in Turkmenistan. The work started after the button to begin the welding process of the project was pressed.
  • The button was pressed by Vice President of India Hamid Ansari along with Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif, President of Afghanistan Ashraf Ghani and President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimohamedov.
  • The TAPI project is intended to deliver Caspian Sea natural from the energy-rich former Soviet republic Turkmenistan to three South Asian countries.

About TAPI Project:

  • TAPI gas pipeline project is a proposed trans-country natural gas pipeline from Caspian Sea, Turkmenistan to India through Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Countries involved: The abbreviation TAPI itself indicate its member countries- Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.

The pipe line connects central Asia with south Asia covering 1,800 km.

The pipeline begins from Turkmenistan’s Galkynysh field (formally known as South Yoiotan Osman) that has gas reserves are 16 trillion cubic feet.

The estimated construction cost of the project is 10 billion US dollars and is being funded by Asian Development Bank (ADB).

Capacity: It has capacity to carry 90 million standard cubic metres a day (mmscmd).

Supply Share: Both India and Pakistan will get supply of about 38 mmscmd whereas Afghanistan will get 14 mmscmd supply of natural gas.

Runs through: Galkynysh field (Turkmenistan) – Herat and Kandahar province (Afghanistan) – Multan via Quetta (Pakistan) and ends at Fazilka in Punjab (India).

Security: Establishment of an inter-government joint security task force (JSTF) has been recommended to serve as the nucleus of the safety of the pipeline by a security consultant has recommended.

About Turkmenistan:

Capital: Ashgabat

Currency: Turkmenistan manat

President: Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow

2) Saudi Arabian voters voted to elect women in council seats.

  • Saudi Arabian voters voted to elect women in at least 18 municipal council seats. This was a historic local elections in Saudi Arabia in which women were allowed to vote and run for office for the first time.
  • This event occurred for the first time in the history of the country.
  • The winners hailed from different parts of the nation, ranging from largest city to the small village near Islam’s holiest site.
  • The conservative capital of Riyadh saw the most women candidates win, with four elected. Salma bint Hizab al-Oteibi was elected to the council of Madrakah, a region in Mecca.

About Saudi Arabia:

Capital: Riyadh

Currency: Saudi riyal

3) Gambia declared itself an Islamic republic.

  • Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh has declared the tiny West African country an Islamic republic, saying he decided this because Islam is the religion of the majority of its citizens and to break from the nation’s colonial past.
  • It does not appear that President Yahya Jammeh’s announcement changes Gambia’s laws or the country’s constitutional status as a secular state.
  • ``In line with the country’s religious identity and values, I proclaim Gambia as an Islamic state``, the Gambian leader revealed. About 90 per cent of Gambia’s 1.8 million people are Muslim. The country gained independence from Britain in 1965.

About Gambia:

Capital: Banjul

Currency: Gambian dalasi

President: Yahya Jammeh

  1. Gambia is a popular beach destination for British tourists although Mr. Jammeh’s government has been frequently criticised by Britain and other Western powers for human rights abuses.
  2. Mr. Jammeh has ruled Gambia since seizing power in 1994.

4) Saudi Arabia announced the launch of Islamic Military Coalition to counter terrorism.

  • Saudi Arabia announced the launch of Islamic Military Coalition to counter terrorism. The coalition will be led by Saudi Arabia and see the participation of 34 nations.
  • It was established in pursuance of the principles and objectives of the charter of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), which calls for member states to cooperate to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.
  • The coalition includes nations with large and established armies such as Pakistan, Turkey and Egypt as well as war-torn countries such as Libya and Yemen.
  • It will have a joint operations center based in Saudi Arabia’s capital, Riyadh.

Member nations: Saudi Arabia, Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Benin, Turkey, Chad, Togo, Tunisia, Djibouti, Senegal, Sudan, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Gabon, Guinea, Palestine, Comoros, Qatar, Cote d`Ivoire, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Maldives, Mali, Malaysia, Egypt, Morocco, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Yemen.

About Saudi Arabia:

Capital: Riyadh

Currency: Saudi riyal

5) International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) ended its 12-year investigation.

  • International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has ended its 12-year investigation into concerns that Iran might be developing nuclear weapons.
  • In this regard, IAEA Board of Governors have passed a resolution ending its long-running inquiry against Ian but allowing inspectors to continue to police the country’s nuclear programme.
  • Earlier IAEA has concluded that Iran had conducted nuclear weapons-related research until 2003 and to a lesser extent until 2009, but found no evidence was found.
  • The move is seen as a key step towards lifting UN, EU and US sanctions and a symbolic victory for Iran.

About International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA):

  • IAEA is an international organization that seeks to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and to inhibit its use for any military purpose, including nuclear weapons.
  • It was established as an autonomous organization in 1957 through its own international treaty, the IAEA Statute.
  • The IAEA has its headquarters in Vienna, Austria. It is independent of the United Nations but reports to both the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and Security Council (UNSC).


6) Saudi Arabia has reopened its embassy in Iraq.

  • Saudi Arabia has reopened its embassy in Iraq, a quarter of a century after Riyadh broke off diplomatic relations with Baghdad following the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.
  • They were met at the airport. The staff consists of 35 people, led by the ambassador’s deputy. The Saudi ambassador to Baghdad was due to arrive by December 17 and would attend an official opening ceremony.
  • Reports say that a Saudi consulate is expected to open later in Erbil, the capital of Iraq’s autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government.
  • Meanwhile, the official Saudi Press Agency quoted Sabhan as saying in a statement that Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud’s ``directives to reopen the embassy in Baghdad embody his keenness to strengthen relations between the two countries and their peoples``.


  1. Diplomatic relations between Riyadh and Baghdad was restored in 2004 in the absence of a Saudi embassy in Baghdad after the US-led invasion of Iraq toppled the country’s former dictator, Saddam Hussein, in 2003.
  2. In 1990, the Iraqi Ba’athist regime, led by the slain Iraqi dictator, invaded Kuwait, an oil-rich Persian Gulf state, which resulted in a seven-month-long occupation.
  3. Saudi Arabia then severed its diplomatic relations with Iraq for the next 14 years.
  4. The reopening of the Saudi embassy comes as Iraqi officials have frequently accused Riyadh of abetting the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, which has seized swathes of land in Iraq and Syria.

About Saudi Arabia:

Capital: Riyadh

Currency: Saudi riyal