International Current Affairs
International Current Affairs September 1st Week 2016
Category : International Current Affairs
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1) Festival of India to be held across 6 cities in Australia.

  • A 10-week-long festival showcasing dance, music, theatre, sports and other visual arts from India and Australia is set to launch across six cities of the island nation, and aims to foster cultural ties between the two countries.
  • Culture is central to the Australia-India relationship and this impressive festival will provide a great opportunity for the people of the two nations to deepen their understanding of each other’s cultures.
  • The "Confluence-Festival of India``, which was announced by Prime Minister NarendraModi during his visit to Australia in 2014, will witness some of the finest elements from the rich tapestry of Indian culture and civilization.
  • The performances will be spread across iconic locations like Opera House, Federation Square, QPAC, Festival Centre, Old Parliament and Perth Concert Hall in the cities of Adelaide, Alice Springs Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.
2) President of Egypt to arrive on three-day visit to India.
  • Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi arrived in New Delhi on a three-day visit and will hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi with an aim to step up engagement in areas of security, counter-terrorism and trade.
  • He will hold wide-ranging talks with Modi and both sides are set to sign a number of MoUs thereafter.
  • India and Egypt have a strong economic relationship. India is the sixth largest trading partner of Egypt – the second largest export destination. India’s imports from Egypt were worth USD 1.74 billion during 2014-15.
  • Indian businessmen have invested nearly $3 billion in about 50 companies in Egypt and have given employment opportunities to around 35,000 Egyptians.

3) India and Vietnam agree to elevate bilateral relations to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.

  • India offers a grant of $5 million to set up a software park in Vietnam and provide $500 million credit line for Vietnam for defense cooperation.
  • Agreement provides a new direction, momentum and substance to India and Vietnam bilateral cooperation and common efforts will also contribute to stability, security and prosperity regions.
  • The two countries signed 12 agreements in a wide range of areas covering IT, space, double taxation and sharing white shipping information.
4) India, Egypt sign agreement on maritime transport.
  • India and Egypt signed an agreement on maritime transport following delegation-level talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and visiting Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El Sisi.
  • Two countries are agreed to work together to fight drug trafficking, transitional crimes, money laundering and challenges of cyber security.
5) Sushma Swaraj leading a 12-member delegation to Rome to attend the canonisation ceremony of Mother Teresa.
  • External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, who is leading a 12-member delegation to attend the canonisation ceremony of Mother Teresa in Rome and met Indian diaspora and talked about various welfare efforts of the government for community members abroad.
  • Apart from the central government delegation, two state government-level delegations from Delhi and West Bengal led by Chief Ministers Arvind Kejriwal and Mamata Banerjee respectively were also in Rome to attend the ceremony that will take place.
6) US, China ratify Paris agreement ahead of G20 summit in Hangzhou, China.
  • China ratified the climate change agreement reached last year in Paris that aims to significantly reduce global emissions, giving a big boost to hopes to bring the accord into effect by the end of this year.
  • China`s approval to the agreement came a day ahead of the G20 summit in Hangzhou, where the leader of the world`s two biggest polluters - US and China responsible for around 40 per cent of the world`s emissions so their ratification of the international legal document is viewed crucial.
  • The Paris Agreement is the third attempt to address the issue of climate change, after the 1992 UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the 1997 Kyoto Protocol.
7) Mother Teresa is being declared saint by Pope Francis in Vatican City.
  • Mother Teresa has been declared a saint by Pope Francis at a canonization ceremony held in Vatican City. The canonization on September comes on the eve of her 19th death anniversary. She will now be known as Saint Teresa of Calcutta.
  • Mother Teresa founded a sisterhood that runs 19 homes, and won the Nobel Peace Prize.

8) Ghost snake species discovered.

  • Researchers discovered a new snake species in Madagascar and named it ``ghost snake`` for its pale grey coloration and elusiveness. They found the ghost snake on a recently opened path within the well-traveled Ankarana National Park in northern Madagascar in February 2014.
9) Indian embassy sets up solar plant at Vietnam (Hanoi).
  • The Indian Embassy in Hanoi has set up a grid connected solar energy generation plant in its office building recently. The plant was set up to make Indian Missions abroad green.
  • The Indian embassy in Hanoi is the first to start this mission green, in abroad.
  • The energy not used would be automatically added in the power grid and the amount of this energy will deducted from the monthly bill. Now in the second phase all the bulbs and tube lights of the embassy would be replaced with the LED bulbs.
10) World’s largest LEGO ship sets Guinness record.
  • A new Guinness world record for the largest LEGO ship has been set in Denmark, where employees of a shipping company successfully constructed the incredible 2,860 kg boat using over one million interlocking plastic bricks.
  • The blue and white LEGO boat measures 12.035 metres in length
  • It took 900 person hours to build and thousands of DFDS employees from across the world got on board, assisted in the challenge by a few LEGO building professionals.
11) China agrees on steps to reduce steel exports.
  • China agreed to steps toward reducing its politically volatile steel exports but avoided binding commitments, as leaders of major economies ended a summit with a crowded agenda that also included trade, the Koreas and Syria.
  • In a joint statement, Chinese President Xi Jinping, U.S. President Barack Obama and the leaders of Britain, Japan, Russia and other Group of 20 nations pledged to boost sluggish global growth by promoting innovation.
12) 170 million-year-old marine reptile fossil uncovered.
A fossilised skeleton of a dolphin-like predator which inhabited the oceans around 170 million years ago, has been uncovered in a Scotland museum where it laid buried for 50 years.
A type of ichthyosaur, the marine reptile is estimated to be four metres long with hundreds of cone-shaped teeth. Scientists believe these `sea dragons` became extinct shortly before the dinosaurs.
13) Driverless Bus Services Start In France.
  • Driverless minibuses will begin taking passengers in the eastern French city of Lyon at the weekend in a year-long experiment that officials are calling a "world first".
  • The two electric vehicles, fitted with high-tech equipment including laser sensors, stereo vision and GPS, can ferry around 15 passengers at a top speed of 20 kilometers an hour.
  • Manufactured by the French firm Navya and costing 200,000 Euros (USD 225,000) apiece, a prototype was tested in 2013.
14) Russia, Saudi pledge oil cooperation without freeze.
  • The world’s top two crude-oil producers pledged to cooperate to stabilize global markets, while failing to announce any specific measures to bolster prices.
  • Russia would be ready to join an agreement among major producers to freeze output.
15) China may allow imports of Indian non-basmati rice.
  • China may soon grant market access to India`s non-basmati rice exports, acceding to a long-pending request from New Delhi.
  • The Centre had repeatedly taken up the issue of the country’s ballooning goods trade deficit with China bilaterally. India had demanded market access for products including non-basmati rice, pharmaceuticals and several fruits & vegetables among others.
  • India’s goods trade deficit with China has surged from $1.1 billion in 2003-04 to $52.7 billion in 2015-16.
  • Beijing has been ``denying`` market access to India`s non-basmati rice claiming that the item had failed to meet Chinese norms on quality, health and safety. Its concerns included the likelihood of a pest called ‘Khapra beetle (or cabinet beetle)’ getting transported along with Indian non-basmati rice consignments to China.
  • China was the world’s largest rice importer in 2015-16 followed by Saudi Arabia and Iraq.
16) Sanskrit becomes part of United Nation’s charter.
  • United Nations, has included into it the most ancient and traditional language of India, Sanskrit into its charter. A charter binds the assembly of nations.
  • The charter being translated into the Sanskrit language is the first of its kind attempt to make it to such an important international document.
  • National Mission for Manuscripts in India promoted the translation work. The pioneer of this promotion was primarily Dr.Jitendra Kumar Tripathi.
  • The development which is of great importance for india as a whole, was appreciated by the United Nations Associates.