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International Current Affairs March 4th Week 2021

Japan-India Launches Patent Prosecution Highway:

India and Japan announced the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) programme in November 2019. 
♦ In November of this year, India and Japan announced the Bilateral Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) programme between the two countries. 
♦ The Indian Patent Office (IPO) will only accept patent applications related to certain specific technical fields, such as computer science, electrical, electronic, information technology, physics, civil, machinery, textiles, automobiles, and metallurgy, according to a bilateral agreement between the Japan Patent Office (JPO) and the Indian Patent Office (IPO) technical fields. 
♦ The patent prosecution highway is a set of initiatives aimed at speeding up the patent application process by sharing information among participating countries` patent offices. 
♦ Benefits can be obtained for each participating patent office by leveraging prior work done by patent offices in other participating countries. As a result, the work can be completed concurrently, reducing examination workload and improving patent quality.
China, Russia Look To Deepen Best Ties:
Sergei Lavrov, Russia`s foreign minister, is in China for an important visit. 
♦ The visit took place shortly after the Alaska talks on China-US relations. Following the first summit of the Group of Quad Leaders (India, Australia, Japan and the United States). 
♦ He said that the current Russian-Chinese partnership is the best in history. 
♦ He claims that Western countries, especially the United States, are obstructing the creation of a genuinely multi-polar democratic world because they want to maintain their dominance of the global economy and politics at all costs, and combine their will with the requirements put on other countries. 
♦ Russia and China are pursuing a positive and unified agenda in this regard, and they hope that the international governance system will be fair and democratic, run smoothly, and built on the foundation of extensive cooperation between countries and their integration initiatives.



International Current Affairs March 3rd Week 2021

Somalia To Organize Elections UN:

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has requested the Somali government to hold elections on March 12, 2021, as soon as possible. The UN Security Council made this request in a resolution that highlighted Al-Shabaab and other armed opposition groups as a serious threat to Somalia`s security. 
♦ The African Union has been approved by the United Nations Security Council to maintain a large force of approximately 20,000 people in Somalia until the end of 2020. The goal is to reduce the threat of terrorist groups while also ensuring federalism, autonomy, solidarity, and stability. Somalia is a country in Africa.  
♦ The resolution`s aim is to hand security over to Somali authorities so that they can take the lead in 2021 and assume full responsibility by 2023. The UN Security Council resolution also emphasised the importance of building capacity among Somali forces and agencies, as well as AU forces. 
♦ Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed (Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed) was under the pressure after failing to hold scheduled elections in February 2021, and the resolution was passed. The referendum did not take place because there was no consensus on how to vote. Muhammad has also been accused of delaying the election because he is seeking re-election to a second four-year term. 
♦ Somalia is located in Africa`s Horn of Africa. The nation is bordered on the west by Ethiopia, on the northwest by Djibouti, on the north by the Gulf of Aden, on the east by the Indian Ocean, and on the southwest by Kenya. Somalia has the world`s longest coastline. The nation has a population of 15 million people and is Africa`s most culturally united country. Somalis make up 85 percent of the population. The official languages of Somalia include Somali and Arabic.

Dispute Between Kenya and Somalia:

Kenya has refused to take its maritime border dispute with Somalia to the International Court of Justice. 
♦ The crucial issue of contention between the two countries is the direction in which their Indian Ocean maritime border should be extended. 
Somalia’s position: 
♦ The maritime frontier should run parallel to the land border, all the way to the Indian Ocean (ie, southeast). 
Kenya`s position:
♦ The equator should be parallel to the coastal frontier. 
The importance of the disputed area: 
♦ The conflict has resulted in a triangle with a surface area of approximately 160,000 square kilometres. It`s a big place with a lot of marine protected areas. It is also thought to contain oil and natural gas reserves.
International Court of Justice: 
♦ In 1945, the United Nations Charter created the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which began operations in April 1946. It is the United Nations` primary judicial organ, and it is housed in The Hague`s Peace Palace (Netherlands). It settles legal disputes between countries and offers legal advice on matters referred to it by UN-accredited agencies and specialized agencies in accordance with international law. Although the courts have no enforcement power and well-known countries ignore their rulings, their rulings are binding.
India-Brazil-South Africa Dialogue Forum (IBSA) Was Held:
The Women`s Forum of the India-Brazil-South Africa Dialogue Forum (IBSA) was held. 
About IBSA: 
♦ In June 2003, the India-Brazil-South Africa Dialogue Forum was formed as a cooperation mechanism between three developing countries, three multi-ethnic and multi-cultural democracies.  
Its determination is: 
♦ Assist in the design of new international frameworks 
♦ They will speak out about global issues. 
♦ Intensify their relations in a number of areas. 
♦ The "Declaration of Brasilia" of 2003 formally announced the founding of IBSA, citing India, Brazil, and South Africa`s democratic credentials, their status as developing countries, and their willingness to operate on a global scale. This is the primary reason why these three countries are connected. 
♦ Participatory democracy, respect for human rights, and the rule of law are the fundamental ideals, norms, and values of the IBSA (India-Brazil-South Africa Dialogue Forum). 
♦ To retain a flexible and transparent structure, the Forum does not have a permanent headquarters or executive secretariat. 
♦ It holds Summits of Heads of State or Government at the highest level. 
IBSA`s activities are divided into four tracks: 
♦ Political coordination

International Current Affairs March 2nd Week 2021

China Gives Green Light For First Downstream Dams On Brahmaputra:

The first dam to be constructed on the lower reaches of the Yarlung Zangbo river, as the Brahmaputra was known in Tibet before it flowed into India, was given the green light in China`s new Five-Year Plan (FYP) 2021-2025 draught. 
♦ The development of hydropower bases downstream of the river is one of the priority energy projects to be carried out in the next five years, according to the draught outline of the "2025 Five-Year Plan" and the draught long-term target by 2035. 
♦ The part of the Tibetan river that flows into India is referred to as downstream. 
♦ These projects` inclusion in the draught plan means that the authorities have given their approval for the first phase of excavation downstream. 
♦ This is the start of a new era in river hydropower production. 
♦ Other big projects include the construction of nuclear power plants along the coast and power transmission lines. 
♦ All of the documents are complete and ready for formal approval.
Defence Acquisition Councils Plans-US:
Under Project-75I, the Defense Acquisition Council (DAC) will seek multibillion-dollar deals with the United States for armed drones and advanced submarines.
♦ India has been trying to buy 30 armed drones from the US, each serving ten people, but the process has been repeatedly postponed in recent years.
♦ Despite the Navy`s urgent need for High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) drones, the Army and Air Force remain sceptical of the platform`s utility due to its high cost.
♦ The Navy has launched two unarmed MQ-9B Sea Guardian drones that were purchased from the US.
♦ The 75I-class submarine is the Indian Navy`s successor to the 75-class Kalvari-class submarine.
♦ The Defense Procurement Procedure`s Strategic Partnership (SP) model is being used to process this project.
♦ This project was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Security in 1999 as part of a 30-year plan to develop indigenous submarines.
About Defence Acquisition Council: 
♦ The Defense Acquisition Council (DAC) is the Ministry of Defense`s highest decision-making body, in charge of formulating new strategies and capital acquisitions for the three services (Army, Navy, and Air Force) as well as the Indian Coast Guard.
♦ The Minister of Defence  is the chairman of the Defense Acquisition Council.
♦ It was formed in 2001, following the recommendations of the Group of Ministers on "National Security System Reform," i.e., after the Kargil War (1999).