International Current Affairs
International Current affairs May 4th Week 2016
Category : International Current Affairs
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1) Colombo to set up Office on Missing Persons.

  • The Sri Lankan government has decided to set up an Office on Missing Persons (OMP), one of the four mechanisms proposed to deal with the civil war-related grievances.
  • The OMP will not engage in prosecutions. However, it will have the power to investigate for the purpose of clarifying the fate of missing persons and the circumstances related to the disappearance, and communicating the status to relatives of the missing persons.
  • Decision on a new office was taken after undertaking a ``rigorous review of best practices`` both in Sri Lanka and across the world including Uganda, Bolivia, Argentina, and Uruguay which have all had missing person’s offices.

About Sri Lanka:

Capital: Colombo
Prime minister: Ranil Wickremesinghe
President: Maithripala Sirisena
Currency: Sri Lankan rupee

2) China sign two agreements with Sudan to build nuclear reactor.

  • China has signed agreements with Sudan, to build 600-MW atomic reactor, the first such project in the African country.
  • Two framework deals have been signed by state-owned China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) with Sudan on nuclear power development.
  • China already is having a long standing nuclear cooperation with Pakistan as it has built several nuclear power reactors and is currently building two 1100 mw reactors in Karachi.
  • Sudan has faced power shortages in recent years and is seeking to build two 600-mw pressurised water reactors to meet the growing demand for electricity, with construction on the first one starting in 2021.


3) New French Law Makes It Illegal To Email Employees After Work Hours.

  • A new labour agreement in France means that employees must ignore their bosses` work emails once they are out of the office and relaxing at home even on their smartphones.
  • A company of 50 employees or more, you cannot email an employee after typical work hours.
  • The amendment has come about because studies show that in the digital age it’s become increasingly difficult for people to distance themselves from the workplace during their off hours.
  • New law allows people to get the full advantage of their time off.

About France:

Capital: Paris
Prime minister: Manuel Valls
President: François Hollande
Currencies: Euro, CFP franc

4) Child sex offenders in Indonesia to face execution or chemical castration.

  • Child sex offenders could be executed or chemically castrated in Indonesia under a crackdown following the brutal gang rape and murder of a 14-year-old girl.
  • Indonesian President Joko Widodo announced a regulation - effective immediately - that would allow judges to sentence child rapists to death or order that they be chemically castrated.
  • Additional punishment could include publicly announcing the sex offender`s identity and requiring those on parole to wear an electronic monitoring device.

About Indonesia:

Capital: Jakarta
Prime minister: Jusuf Kalla
President: Joko Widodo
Currency: Indonesian rupiah

5) Finance minister to leave for Japan on 6-day official visit.

  • The Union Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley will leave on 6-day official visit to Japan.
  • On arrival in Tokyo he will have meetings with CEOs of Japanese Companies (Soft Bank/ JBIC).
  • Finance Minister will attend the 22nd International Conference on ``The Future of Asia`` organized by Nikkei Inc.
  • Finance Minister will have Bilateral Meetings with the Prime Minister of Japan Mr. Shinzo Abe, METI Minister (Economy, Trade & Industry) and Health Minister.
  • Finance Minister will deliver a Lecture on ``India: Political, Social and Economic Change (TBC) at Osaka University and participate & address the ``Make in India- Investment Promotion Seminar.

About Japan:

Capital: Tokyo
Prime minister: Shinzo Abe
Currency: Japanese yen

6) EU-India Make Co-ordinated Proposal for KP Chair in 2018 and 2019.

  • Official representatives of the European Union and India participating in the Kimberley Process (KP) Intersessional, currently under way in Dubai, made a co-ordinate proposal under which EU will assume responsibility as KP Vice-Chair in 2017 and as KP Chair in 2018, while India will become KP Vice-Chair in 2018 and assume the position of KP Chair in 2019.
  • The two delegations were making this announcement as responsible KP partners, and ``offering a common solution`` so as to ``(avoid) situations of conflict and (provide) stability to the KP in the next crucial years to come``.

Following goals that EU and India shared for the KP:

(1) Enhance cooperation and partnership with the United Nations’ system and with the international financial institutions; explore how the KP can contribute to the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

(2) Work towards an agreement on ensuring the effectiveness of the KP scheme and further strengthening its implementation and enforcement.

(3) Renew and reinforce the engagement with Industry and Civil Society by actively promoting an open, constructive and substantial dialogue among the three constitutive pillars of the KP.

7) Pakistan bans TV contraceptive adverts.

  • Pakistan has banned advertisements for contraceptive products on television and radio over concern that they expose inquisitive children to the subject of sex.
  • The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) was acting in response to complaints from parents and its ban covered all contraceptive, birth control and family planning products.
  • The ban comes despite a government initiative to encourage the use of birth control in the country, a conservative Muslim country where talking about sex in public is taboo.

About Pakistan:

Capital: Islamabad
Prime minister: Nawaz Sharif
President: Mamnoon Hussain
Currencies: Pakistani rupee

8) India-Russia Agree To Export BrahMos.

  •  India and Russia have agreed `in principle` to export the world`s fastest anti-ship cruise missile, BrahMos, to third countries - the UAE, Vietnam, South Africa and Chile.
  • Talks with the UAE, Chile, South Africa and Vietnam are in advanced stage concerning export.
  • Compared to existing state-of-the-art subsonic cruise missiles, BrahMos has: 3 times more velocity, 2.5 to 3 times more flight range, 3 to 4 times more seeker range, 9 times more kinetic energy
  • BrahMos is a short-range ramjet supersonic cruise missile that can be launched from submarines, ships, aircraft or land.

About Russia:

Capital: Moscow
Prime minister: Dmitry Medvedev
President: Vladimir Putin
Currency: Russian ruble

9) Vice President Hamid Ansari to leave on a 5-day visit to Morocco and Tunisia.

  • Vice President Mr. Hamid Ansari is leaving to Morocco and Tunisia on a 5 day visit. During the visit, he will hold deliberations with top leaders of both the countries, with an aim to strengthen bilateral relations and explore new areas of co-operation.
  • Issues of terrorism, expansion of United Nations Security Council, investment, ways to strengthen outreach to Africa and regional matters are likely to figure during the talks.
  • A number of MoUs in various fields including education and IT, capacity building and cultural exchange are also expected to be signed.

About Morocco:

Capital: Rabat
Prime minister: Abdelilah Benkirane
King: Mohammed VI
Currency: Moroccan dirham

About Tunisia:

Capital: Tunis
Prime minister: Habib Essid
President: Beji Caid Essebsi
Currency: Tunisian dinar

10) IAF Participation in Ex Desert Eagle – II at UAE.

  • Indian Air Force and United Arab Emirates (UAE) went into a bilateral exercise of Second Edition named Eagle-II at Al-Dhafra Air Base in UAE.
  • Su-30 MkI of the Indian Air Force and Mirage 2000-9, F-16 of UAE Air Force are participating in the exercise.
  • The exercise will be played under multiple simulated scenarios. Exchange sorties for aircrew of both the Air Forces have also been planned.
  • These air combat exercises provide exposure towards mission planning and execution in a simulated high threat combat environment besides building up crew confidence and bonhomie with friendly Air Forces of India and United Arab Emirates.

11) 650 migrants saved by Italian, Irish, German ships.

  • Ships saved 668 migrants from smugglers’ boats in distress in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Libya, by bringing the week’s total of migrants rescued from the sea to a staggering 13,000 people.
  • The rescues by the Italian coast guard and navy ships, aided by Irish and German vessels and humanitarian groups, are the latest by a multinational patrol south of the Italian island of Sicily.
  • Many migrant boats in the past few years apparently have sunk without a trace in the Mediterranean, with the dead never found. Often the only news about them comes when family members in Africa or Europe tell authorities that their loved ones never arrived after setting sail from Libya.

12) IS slaps $100 fine for shaving beard.

  • Islamic State (IS) has imposed new taxes and fines like a $100 penalty for shaving a beard and $50 for trimming it and $5 for men not properly wearing the traditional izar (a long garment).
  • Women being charged $25 for wearing cloaks deemed too tight, according to analysis released by IHS Inc.
  • Trucks crossing check points now have to pay between $600 and $700 while last summer the fee was $300.
  • Between December 2015 and March 2016, the IS lost about 22 per cent of its territory.

13) North Korea’s missile launch fails.

  • North Korea failed an attempted missile launch, the latest in a series of setbacks for a ballistic weapons programme that aspires to threaten the U.S. mainland.
  • One missile was test-fired from the eastern city of Wonsan.
  • The missile apparently flew for about two or three seconds and then exploded.
  • Initial reports suggested it was an intermediate-range Musudan missile, according to a U.S. defense official confirmed; it would be the fourth time North Korea has tried and failed to launch this type of missile.
  • The North Korea is banned by the UN from using any ballistic missile technology.

About North Korea:

Capital: Pyongyang
Supreme leader: Kim Jong-un
Premier: Pak Pong-ju
Currency: North Korean won

14) Iran demands social media data.
Iran has announced that all social media sites must store any data relating to Iranian citizens only on servers inside the country’s borders.
Iran has set a one-year deadline for foreign social media to hand over data on their Iranian users.
Decision was taken at a meeting of an Iranian committee on the use of cyberspace headed by President Hassan Rouhani.
The measure will affect, in particular, Telegram, a messaging app with more than 20 million users in the country, with a population of 80 million.
Iran has incredibly strict digital controls in place. In the past, it’s even considered unplugging from the Internet, hiding, and making its own network.

About Iran:

Capital: Tehran
Currency: Iranian rial
President: Hassan Rouhani
Supreme leader: Ali Khamenei