Recently India’s decades long effort to get the full membership of the 2nd largest intergovernmental group – the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) got the huge boost when it attended the OIC’s 46th session of council of foreign ministers meeting at Abu Dhabi as a guest of honour on the invitation by the host country – United Arab Emirates (UAE).It has to be noted that, India has never been invited to the OIC before and the latest development comes at a time when the India-Pakistan tension is running high, is being seen as a diplomatic success.
After the terror attack in Pulwama, the government has decided to stop India’s share of waters in the Indus river system from flowing into Pakistan. This indicates a shift in the policy of the government with regards to the Indus Waters Treaty.
Recently, the Indian Air Force (IAF) Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman who was arrested by the Pakistani rangers was returned to India. Pakistan claimed that the Abhinandan was set free as a peace gesture. However, India maintained that Pakistan is obliged to release the pilot under the Geneva Conventions. It is imperative in this context to understand the provisions in Geneva Conventions on the treatment of prisoners of war (PoWs).
As President Donald Trump showed the intention of the United States to withdraw the Generalised System of Preferences, popularly referred to as GSP, from India, IAS EXPRESS takes a look at the programme, its benefits and what it means now that it may be revoked.
The US has decided to withdraw 7,000 out of its 14,000 troops from Afghanistan. The American troops contribute to training and advising local forces fighting the Taliban and ISIS. Trump’s sudden announcement has raised speculation that it could be linked to his pre-election promises to pull out from external wars to save money to consolidate internally. It also signals that the US has perhaps admitted being defeated in Afghanistan and that it had agreed to the Taliban’s demands. This decision is strengthened by the recent talks between the US and Taliban in Doha which has resulted in a framework for a peace agreement, focussed on ending the 17-year-old conflict in Afghanistan.
India’s participation in the mega-trade agreement, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) has long been debated and sentiments around the subject are quite divided and divergent. Critics warned that India must exercise caution before signing RCEP which goes far beyond trade liberalisation to impose a common set of rules on investment and IPRs.
Recently, the Lok Sabha has passed the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 which seeks to ease norms for religious minorities from neighbouring nations (non-muslims) to get Indian citizenship by amending age-old Citizenship Act, 1955. However, it has polarised regions in border states such as Assam since the locals fear that it will result in demographic change due to immigration.
Recently, Indian firm “India Ports Global Limited” took over operations at the Shahid Behesti Port in Chabahar, Iran. The representative of India, Iran, and Afghanistan met and finalized the routes for trade and transit corridors between the three nations. An event has also been planned on February 26, 2019, to promote and popularise the potential of Chabahar port.