France reiterates support for India’s permanent seat in UN Security Council

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France, which assumed the March Presidency of the United Nations Security Council, has reiterated its support for India as the permanent member of the powerful UN organ, saying the UNSC’s enlargement is the “first crucial part” towards its reform.

India has been calling for the reform of the UN Security Council along with Brazil, Germany and Japan for long, emphasising that it rightly deserves a place at the UN high table as a permanent member.

 

 

UN Environment’s sixth Global Environment Outlook released

The United Nation Environment Program (UNEP) has released the sixth edition of the Global Environment Outlook (2019) titled ‘Healthy Planet, Healthy People’.

The Global Environment Outlook (GEO) is often referred to as UN Environment’s flagship environmental assessment.  The first publication was in 1997 and was originally requested by Member States. It is a flagship report because it fulfills the core functions of the organization, which date back to the UN General Assembly resolution that established the UN Environment Programme in 1972.

China blocks India’s bid to declare JeM chief Masood Azhar global terrorist for fourth time

In yet another attempt to shield terrorists based in Pakistan, China has blocked India’s bid to declare Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar a global terrorist for the fourth time. This has happened despite India’s huge diplomatic pressure to ban the JeM chief, who is the mastermind behind the ghastly suicide bomb attack in Jammu and Kashmir, which left 44 CRPF jawans dead. After the February-14 Pulwama terrorist attack, the US, the UK and France had moved the United Nations (UN) to declare Masood a global terrorist on February 27. However, China has again chosen to side with its “all-weather friend” Pakistan, citing it wanted a solution (of the conflict in J&K) “acceptable to all”.

Ethiopian Airlines crash: India bans Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes

Image result for Ethiopian Airlines crash: India bans Boeing 737 MAX 8 planesThe Directorate General of Joining an ever-growing list of countries, India has decided to ban Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes following the Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed 157 people. Current Indian airlines that operate these aircraft are SpiceJet that has twelve of these planes in its fleet and Jet Airways that has five. “DGCA has taken the decision to ground the Boeing 737-MAX planes immediately. These planes will be grounded till appropriate modifications and safety measures are undertaken to ensure their safe operations,”

US resolution to ban JeM Chief Masood Azhar; India, US sign agreement for exchange of CbC Reports

The United States on March 27, 2019 circulated a draft resolution at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to blacklist Chief of Pakistan-based terrorist group Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), Masood Azhar.

Azhar is linked to terrorism for “participating in the financing, planning, facilitating, preparing, or perpetrating of acts or activities carried out by JeM”.

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Italy joins China’s Economic Silk Road project, Oman allows US military to use its ports

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Italy on March 23, 2019 signed a “non-binding” protocol with China to take part in the nation’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which aims to link China with Europe.

With the move, Italy has become the first G-7 country to sign up for the massive project, which is seen as a new Silk Road that will have trade links stretching from Asia to Europe.  In doing so, Italy has sparked unease in the United States and its European Allies, who have previously expressed concern over China’s growing global influence.

New Zealand Mosque Attacks; Who is Brenton Tarrant?; India, US to sign agreement for exchange of Country-by-Country Reports

Brenton Tarrant, 28, accused of carrying out attacks on two mosques in Christchurch on Friday that resulted in the deaths of at least 50 people, including children, was charged with murder as he appeared in a district court on Saturday.

In the worst attack in the Pacific country’s history, at least 49 people have been killed and over 20 injured in shootings at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Kazakhstan’s President abruptly resigns after nearly 30 years; Germany initiates move to ban Masood Azhar

Image result for Kazakhstan's President abruptly resigns after nearly 30 years; Germany initiates move to ban Masood Azhar

Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev abruptly announced his resignation from the position on March 19, 2019 after nearly three decades in power.

The 78-year-old leader has ruled the central Asian nation ever since it emerged after the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s. He is the only leader that independent Kazakhstan has ever known. Hence, his sudden resignation raises uncertainty over the future course of the nation.

Mohammad Shtayyeh named as new Palestinian Prime Minister

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Born in the city of Nablus in the West Bank in 1958, he was nine years old when Israel seized the territory during the Six-Day War, an occupation that continues.He studied at Birzeit University in the West Bank, completed a PhD in development at Sussex University in Britain and then returned to the Palestinian territories in the late 1980s.

Mohammad Shtayyeh was on March 10, 2019 named as the new Prime Minister of Palestine by the President of Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas. Shtayyeh, a long time ally of the Abbas, is the member of the central committee of the President’s Fatah party.