November 2019 - International News




  • Oxford Dictionaries named climate emergency as its 2019 Word of the Year choosing it from an all-environmental shortlist that also included climate action, climate denial eco-anxiety extinction, and flight shame.

    The Word of the Year citation is intended to highlight a word or expression shown through usage evidence to reflect the ethos, mood, or preoccupations of the passing year, and have lasting potential as a term of cultural significance. Recent winners have included toxic youthquake post-truth and vape. The shortlist includes a variety of different words that illustrate new trends in language usage.

    The use of the term climate emergency increased by a hundredfold since 2018, according to data collected in the Oxford Corpus, a database containing hundreds of millions of words of written English. It is the most common compound involving emergency occurring three times as often as the next most-common, health emergency.

    This reflects a deliberate decision by some news organizations, including The Guardian, to use climate emergency or climate crisis instead of climate change to better convey the urgency of the situation. It reflects similar deliberate decision to focus people’s attention, but a reading, if a necessarily subjective one, of the lexicographic evidence.


  • India’s Constitution is a seminal document: UNGA President. India’s Constitution marked the country’s emergence from the shadows of colonialism to the light of independence, says Tijjani Muhammad-Bande

    Tijjani Muhammad-Bande Congratulating India on the occasion of the 70th Constitution Day, the President of the UN General Assembly on (26 November, 2019) said the country’s Constitution is a “seminal document” which marked its emergence from the shadows of colonialism to the light of independence. He said India’s struggle for independence inspired many others and India’s Constitution is a seminal document which marked the country’s emergence from the shadows of colonialism to the light of independence. Muhammad-Bande, who presides over the 193-Member General Assembly, wished the people of India peace, happiness and prosperity for decades ahead on this special day.

    It was on this day in 1949 that the Constitution of India was adopted by the Constituent Assembly and it came into force on January 26, 1950, marking the beginning of India as a republic.


  • Singapore Signs MOU with South Korea on Cybersecurity Cooperation. Singapore signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with South Korea to enhance cooperation and information-sharing on cybersecurity, according to a statement from the city-state's government. The MOU signed by David Koh, chief executive of the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore, and Kim Seok-hwan, president of the Korea Internet & Security Agency. The MOU witnessed by Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

    Singapore signed similar agreements with New Zealand, Canada, India, Australia, France, the Netherlands, the UK the United States. The city-state, a trade-reliant nation with a rapidly aging population, is trying to restructure its economy to make it a global center of innovation. As a hyper connected financial hub, it's also been a target for hackers.


  • International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women observed on November 25th every year. On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, UN and regional experts on violence against women and women's rights call upon all States to close the gap between international and national laws on rape and sexual violenceThe 2019 theme for the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is Orange the World: Generation Equality Stands against Rape.

    The Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women issued by the UN General Assembly in 1993 defines violence against women. The act of gender-based violence that results in physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life. Several public events are coordinated at the International Day. The Iconic buildings and landmarks will be ‘oranged’ to recall the need for a violence-free future.


  • Saudi Arabia elected to UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, member state of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), was elected to the World Heritage Committee for the first time, days after winning the membership in the UNESCO Executive Board.

    Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, Minister of Culture of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, who is also Chairman of the National Committee for Education, Science and Culture, said that the Kingdom's election to the World Heritage Committee shows the international community's confidence in the Kingdom's standing and supportive role for preserving the world heritage.


  • China topped with the most diplomatic posts across the world. Lowy Institute, an Australian think tank, reported that China has overtaken the United States as the country with the most diplomatic posts across the world. India ranked 12th in the diplomatic sweepstakes in the report.
    Report highlights:
    China now has 276 diplomatic posts globally whereas the US holds 273 diplomatic posts.
    China has just one additional embassy and high commission, 169, than the US that has 168
    Beijing has 96 consulates around the world and Washington has 88.
    India has 123 embassies and high commissions, and 54 consulates, across the world.


  • International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian People is observed on November 29 every year. The day is also known as Solidarity Day. The day marks the anniversary of resolution 181. In 1977, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) passed a resolution 32/40 B and called for the observance of the International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian People. On 29 November 1947, the UNGA adopted the resolution on the partition of Palestine and passed resolution 181 (II) on the observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

    On 1 December 2005, the Assembly requested the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and the Division for Palestinian Rights. It organized an annual exhibit on Palestinian rights or a cultural event in cooperation with the Permanent Observer Mission of Palestine to the UN. The day encourages the Member States to continue to give the widest support and publicity to the observance of the Day of Solidarity.


  • Indian-American former PepsiCo head Indra Nooyi and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos have been inducted into the National Portrait Gallery(NPF). It inducted for the positive impact on America’s shared history, development and culture. National Portrait Gallery was founded by Congress in 1962. It located in Washington D.C, USA. Kim Sajet is the director of the National Portrait Gallery.


  • World’s first electric racing aircraft was unveiled at 2019 Dubai air show. An all-electric racing aircraft was unveiled by Air Race E, an Airbus-backed European planemaker, at the on-going 2019 Dubai Air Show. The aircraft was called White Lightning. The aircraft is to be manufactured by the UK-based Condor Aviation. The aircraft aims to boost its green aerospace technology.

    The invention comes amid the increasing concerns about the environmental impact of fossil-fuel intensive air travel. The aircraft uses an electric motor that will carry it at flight speeds of around 482 km per hour on a tight 5 km circuit, just 10 meters above the ground. Lithium batteries are installed under the fuselage of the plane. It provides power for five minutes of high-intensity racing and around 10 minutes of reserve flying at reduced power.

    It is expected to provide a test bed for innovation and accelerate the journey towards commercial electric travel. Other companies, including US ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc, Boeing, Volkswagen's sports car brand, Porsche, are working to develop a concept electric flying vehicle capable of transporting people in urban environments.


  • Mahinda Rajapaksa will be sworn in as new Prime minister of Srilanka on 21 November, 2019. Mr. Rajapaksa served as two-term President during which 2005 to 2015 and is the elder brother of current President Gotabaya Rajapksa. He was barred from contesting Presidential elections because of two-term limit and will be staging a political comeback as Prime minister. A caretaker cabinet of 15 ministers is also expected to be sworn in.


  • Israel's attorney general has charged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with bribery, fraud and breach of trust in connection with three separate cases. O Mr Netanyahu is alleged to have accepted gifts from wealthy businessmen and dispensed favours to try to get more positive press coverage. The prime minister described the charges as an attempted coup, blaming them on a tainted process. He has also insisted he will not resign and is not legally obliged to do so.


  • India and China will jointly hold 70 celebratory activities to mark the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two nations. The year-long activities starting from 2020 will demonstrate historic connect between two civilisations as well as growing bilateral relations.

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping had agreed to organise 70 celebratory activities in both countries during their Second Informal Summit in Chennai last month. These activities will further deepen people-to-people exchanges at all levels, including between legislatures, businesses, academics, cultural and youth organisations as well as the defence forces.

    The two sides will also engage in cooperative projects in studying ancient maritime links between India and China through various ways including the establishment of sister-state relations between Tamil Nadu and Fujian Province. Activities will be held related to martial arts exchange, traditional sports, entrepreneurship, and joint post-earthquake search and rescue exercise.


  • France, Britain, Germany, EU ‘extremely concerned’ by Iran's nuclear deal breach. France, Germany, Britain and the European Union have said they are "extremely concerned" by Iran's decision to restart nuclear activities at one of its key sites. Iran is restarting uranium enrichment activities at the Fordow facility. It was confirmed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in its report.

    Iran's action was "inconsistent" with the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPoA, under which Tehran had agreed to curb some of its nuclear activities- notably uranium enrichment- in return for a lifting of economic sanctions. The IAEA report confirmed that Iran has ramped up uranium enrichment, with its stockpile now reaching the equivalent of 551 kilogrammes, as opposed to the 300-kilogramme limit laid down in the JCPoA.


  • Mexico has offered asylum to former Bolivian President Evo Morales, a day after he resigned following weeks of protest over a disputed election. The decision was taken for "humanitarian reasons" after a request from Mr Morales. Morales, 60, had been in power since 2006.

    Mr Morales, Bolivia's first indigenous leader, stepped down after the head of the army publicly called on him to leave his post. The deputy head of the Senate said she would take over as interim president until new elections were held.


  • Dhaka Global Dialogue 2019. Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina on 11 November, 2019 inaugurated the first edition of the three day long Dhaka Global Dialogue. She said that friendship to all, malice to none is the main principle of Bangladesh’s foreign policy. Speaking about the importance of oceans Sheikh Hasina said that peace and stability in the maritime domain will be critical to Asia’s rise. She said that due to its geographical location Bangladesh is a bridge between South Asia and South-East Asia.

    She expressed the hope that the Dhaka Global Dialogue will act as a platform for the countries in this region on the way of achieving environmentally sustainable peace and prosperity. The strategic location of the country gives it an advantage on which it needs to build further. Bangladesh loses almost 2 percent of its GDP annually due to climate change issues but Bangladesh is an example of adaptive resilience which could be emulated by other countries in the world. President of the ORF Samir Saran in his welcome address said that this is the Asian Century which will be shaped by stories of transformations in the east and its collective rise.

    A large number of scholars, policy makers, strategic experts, law makers and industry leaders and professionals of various fields are participating in the event. The three day long programme is being jointly organised by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) and the Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIISS). Over 150 delegates from 50 countries are participating in the conference to discuss some of the most pressing global imperatives in the context of the Indo-pacific region.


  • President of Bangladesh Md. Abdul Hamid is on a four day visit to Nepal. On first day of his visit, Nepal's Minister for Foreign Affairs Pradeep Kumar Gyawali paid a courtesy call on Bangladeshi President in Kathmandu. During the meeting, matters pertaining to cooperation in the areas of trade, investment, energy, connectivity, waterways, aviation, education, transportation and agriculture were discussed. Both the leaders also shared views on enhancing cooperation on matters of regional and global interests, including climate change.

    President of Bangladesh also visited famous Bhaktapur Durbar Square and observed with interest the archaeological and historical sites. President Hamid is scheduled to meet his Nepalese counterpart Bidya Devi Bhandari. President of Nepal will also host a Banquet in his honour. Vice President Nanda Bahadur Pun, Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli and Chairperson of the National Assembly Ganesh Prasad Timilsina will pay courtesy call on Bangladeshi President. Nepal President Hamid will also visit Pokhara.


  • Ex-President of Bolivia Evo Morales arrived in Mexico on 12 November, 2019 to take up political asylum, vowing to continue the struggle. He had resigned amid mounting protests over his fraud-stained re-election to a fourth term on October 20th . He vowed to remain in politics, saying, his flight into exile would not be the end of the story.

    Morales, 60, led Bolivia for more than 13 years. He was a member of the "pink tide" of leftist leaders who held sway across much of Latin America in the 2000s. He was, however, forced to step down after losing the backing of the military and police amid weeks of increasingly violent protests over his constitutionally questionable re-election. The constitutional next-in-line, deputy senate speaker Jeanine Anez, has pledged to call fresh elections.


  • Bangladesh has the highest business bribery risk among South Asian courtiers, according to the Trace Bribery Matrix which releases annual ranking for 200 countries. The Matrix evaluates countries under four parameters which are business interaction with the government, anti-bribery deterrence, transparency and civil society oversight. Bangladesh has been placed at 178 position among 200 countries in terms of business bribery risk.

    It has been on the high risk country list of Trace Bribery Matrix since 2014 when the first matrix was released. According to the report Bangladesh has a high degree of government interaction in business, a high expectation of bribes and a high regulatory burden which contributes in high bribery risk for business in the country. In South Asia, Pakistan and Afghanistan are the only countries where the bribery risk is 'high'. Bhutan has the lowest risk of bribery on the index in South Asia as it is placed at 52 in the ranking. According to this year's TRACE Matrix data, Somalia, South Sudan, North Korea, Yemen and Venezuela presented the highest risk of bribe demands. New Zealand, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland presented the lowest bribery risk.


  • The 5th edition of the Dhaka International Folk Festival was inaugurated on 14th November, 2019 by the Information Minister of Bangladesh Dr Hasan Mahmud at Bangladesh Army Stadium. Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen was present as chief guest in the opening ceremony. More than 200 artistes from 6 countries are be performing in the largest folk festival of Asia.

    Daler Mehendi from India, Shah Alam Sarkar from Bangladesh and Georgian folk band Chveneburebi performed on the first day of the programme. Among the notable ones Chandana Majumdar, Kajol Dewan from Bangladesh, Daler Mehndi from India, Junoon and Hina Nasrullah from Pakistan and Sattuma from Russia will be performing in the three day long event between November 14-16.


  • The 2nd Summit of World Religious Leaders began in Baku, Azerbaijan held from 14-15 November, 2019. The Summit aims to contribute to the development of inter-religious dialogue, promotion, and evolution of such human values as mutual understanding and human solidarity. It has brought together religious leaders of 25 traditional religions and movements from 70 countries.


  • The 2nd edition of the Paris Peace Forum was held at La Grande Halle de La Villette in Paris, France from 11-13 November 2019. The event aimed to encourage international cooperation and collective action for a peaceful world. It works as an incubator to drive projects and launch new initiatives. The forum is held to mobilize and bring together all stakeholders.


  • Draft 'Industry Guidelines on Digital Learning' launched at 40th UNESCO General Conference.
    The 40th UNESCO General Conference was held in Paris, France. The conference is to be held on 12-27 November 2019. In the conference, the Union Minister of Human Resource Development, Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ launched the Industry Guidelines on Digital Learning at the Ministerial Roundtable on Media and Information Literacy and Games in the Digital World.

    The Roundtable was jointly organized by India and Finland in partnership with UNESCO headquarters and UNESCO’s category one institute, Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development (MGIEP).

    The Draft Guidelines were developed by UNESCO MGIEP, based in New Delhi. The guidelines are a response to the Vizag Declaration on Digital Learning that was adopted at TECH 2018. Guidelines are developed to help build digital learning solutions. It will also promote active learning and build 21st-century skills, including social and emotional skills.


  • Gotabaya Rajapaksa wins in Sri Lankan Presidential elections. Rajapaksa, 70, defeated Premadasa, 52, by more than 13 lakh votes, according to the official results. Rajapaksa, who will succeed President Maithripala Sirisena for a five-year term, will be sworn in as the seventh executive President of Sri Lanka at the ancient north central town of Anuradhapura.

    Rajapaksa will be the second member from the Rajapaksa family to become the President. His older brother Mahinda Rajapaksa was President from 2005 to 2015. Rajapaksa secured 52.25 per cent votes (6,924,255) while Premadasa received 41.99 per cent of the total votes polled (5,564,239), the election commission said.



  • In Sri Lanka, the biennial Commonwealth Law Ministers’ Conference began in Colombo under the theme Equal Access to Justice and the Rule of Law. Union Minister for Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad will be representing India at the conference. The four-day conference participated by Law Ministers and Attorney Generals from Commonwealth countries seeks to address challenges faced by millions of people seeking to resolve legal problems or disputes. Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland emphasized the event’s significance in the current global context in which obstacles to justice are prevalent in many forms.

    These include barriers such as poverty, lack of legal aid, distrust of the justice system and corruption. She said that access to justice is fundamental for democracy and peace to flourish and so Commonwealth countries are working actively through mutual support and encouragement to address barriers that may remain, particularly for vulnerable groups.


  • In Canada, an investigation has found the excess amount of lead in the water supply of major cities. Out of 12,000 samples taken from 2014 to 2018, one third exceeded the national safety guideline of 5 parts per billion. The biggest source of lead in Canada's drinking water is antiquated pipes and public service lines that connect people's homes to the main water supply. Lead contamination has been linked with low IQ in children, hypertension and heart disease.


  • US formally notifies UN about its withdrawal from Paris Climate Accord. The US has formally notified the United Nations that it was withdrawing from the Paris climate accord. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the withdrawal, the agreement had imposed what he called an unfair economic burden on the US. The notification begins a one-year process of exiting the global climate change accord, culminating the day after the 2020 US election.

    The agreement brought together 188 nations to combat climate change. It committed them to keeping rising global temperatures below 2 Celsius above pre-industrial levels and attempting to limit them even more, to a 1.5 Celsius rise. The US contributes about 15 per cent of global emissions of carbon.


  • The second phase of the biggest US- Bangladesh Navy exercise named 'Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT)- 2019' started in Chattogram on 04 November, 2019. The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) wing of Bangladesh armed forces, Assistant chief of naval staff (operations) Bangladesh Navy rear admiral M Makbul Hossain was present as the chief guest in the opening ceremony. Rear admiral Murray Tynch, commander logistic group, Western Pacific Command Task Force 73 (CTF-73) of the US Navy was present as the special guest. The second phase of the exercise is being conducted from 4 to 7 November with different subject-based training and exercise.


  • Iran to enrich uranium using centrifuges
    Iran announced that it will begin enriching uranium using centrifuges at its Fordow facility.

    Iran's expansion of uranium enrichment activities in defiance of key nuclear commitments is a big step in the wrong direction and underscores the continuing challenge to international peace and security, the State Department of US said.


  • Guyana to be fastest growing country in the World. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Guyana’s GDP is expected to be more at 86% in 2020 after expanding 4.4% in 2019. Guyana’s economy will grow more than three times within five years. Guyana’ GDP is to get fourteen times as fast as China’s GDP in 2020. Guyana is projecting $300 million in petroleum revenue in 2020. It is a country of South America with 7,80,000 population

    About Guyana:
    Capital: George Town
    Currency: Guyanese Dollar
    President: David A.Granger
    Prime ministerMoses Nagamootoo


  • Iran begins injecting uranium gas into centrifuges at Fordow. Iran stepped up activity at its underground Fordow nuclear plant. With the presence of inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Iran started injecting uranium gas into centrifuges in Fordow. The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran also confirmed the operation.

    French President Emmanuel Macron called Iran's latest move 'grave', saying it explicitly signalled Iran's intent for the first time to leave the deal - formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Iran insists that the latest move is not a violation of the nuclear deal, but is based on the Articles 26 and 36 of the agreement.



  • Russian troops wearing World War II uniforms marched across Moscow's Red Square, in memory of the historic 1941 parade, when Soviet soldiers went directly to the battlefield to fight the Nazis. The annual re-enactment featuring some 4,000 troops and T-34 tanks commemorated the legendary November 7, 1941 parade whose participants marched from Red Square to the front line, becoming a symbol of courage and patriotism. Nearly 7,000 guests including World War II veterans watched the parade.

    The Red Army's triumph in the deadliest war in history is seen as a huge point of pride in Russia. In recent years, the victory in the 1941-1945 conflict known in Russia as the Great Patriotic War has acquired signs of cult status.


  • Iran is now enriching uranium to five percent, after stepping back from its commitments under the troubled 2015 accord with significant powers. The deal four years ago set a 3.67 percent limit for uranium enrichment, but Tehran announced it would no longer respect it after the United States unilaterally abandoned the agreement last year (2018) and reimposed crippling sanctions.


  • United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on 09 November, 2019 welcomed the opening of the Kartarpur Corridor, saying the initiative paves the way for interfaith harmony and understanding. In a historic people-to-people initiative, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan inaugurated the historic corridor linking Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan, the final resting place of Guru Nanak Dev, to Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Punjab's Gurdaspur.

    The Gurdwara Darbar Sahib is located across the Ravi river in Pakistan and is about four kilometres from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur. Separate events were organised on both the sides of the border to launch the much-awaited corridor ahead of the founder of Sikhism Guru Nanak Dev's 550th birth anniversary on the 12th November, 2019. Guru Nanak Dev spent the last 18 years of his life at Kartarpur Sahib, which has now become the world's largest Sikh Gurdwara.


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