Latest Current Affairs – May 20 & 21 2018
1. UK lists Pakistan among top three money launderers
The United Kingdom has listed Pakistan, along with Nigeria and Russia, as the top three sources of money laundering to the country. Reports said that corrupt leaders from developing nations buy expensive real estate in London using wealth looted from their people, making UK’s capital the ‘money laundering capital of the world’.
2. China mulls ending birth limits policy by 2019
China’s State Council has commissioned a research to understand the repercussions of ending birth limits and plans to end the policy by 2019, reports said. China ended its one-child policy and enforced a two-child limit in 2015. The State Council had earlier predicted that 25% of the population will be aged over 60 years by 2030.
3. UAE to allow 100% foreign ownership of businesses
The United Arab Emirates Cabinet has approved a plan to allow foreign investors to own 100% of UAE-based businesses by end of 2018. Foreign investors can presently not own more than 49% of UAE firms, which the exception of firms listed in ‘free zone’. It also approved a proposal for granting residency visas of up to 10 years to investors.
4. First all-woman Indian crew sails across the globe in 252 days
The first all-woman Indian Navy crew took 252 days to sail across the globe and was welcomed in Goa by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday. The six-member crew, which started the voyage onboard 55-foot INSV Tarini in September 2017, travelled over 21,600 nautical miles across three oceans. It sailed across four continents and crossed the equator twice.
5. China sends landing mission to dark side of the moon
China launched a Queqiao (Magpie Bridge) satellite, that will be the first ever to communicate with the Earth from the far side of the Moon. The farther hemisphere of the Moon is never directly visible from the Earth. The Chinese space agency is also planning on sending a rover to the Moon next year, to collect and bring back samples.
6. BrahMos successfully tested under life extension programme
India successfully test-fired the BrahMos missile to validate life extension technologies developed for the first time in the country. It has become the first Indian missile whose life has been extended from 10 to 15 years. The test will result in huge savings of replacement cost of missiles, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said.
7. India to integrate AI in defence to boost preparedness
Defence Production Secretary Ajay Kumar has said India will integrate Artificial Intelligence (AI) in defence forces to improve preparation for “next-generation warfare”. The initiative, which will be undertaken in partnership with private sector, is aimed at producing unmanned vehicles and weaponry. A task force led by Tata Sons chairman N Chandrasekaran has been formed to oversee the project.
8. Rafael Nadal wins Italian Open Title
Rafael Nadal defeated world number three Alexander Zverev to win his eighth Italian Open title and 78th career singles title. With the win, Nadal reclaimed the top rank, overtaking Roger Federer who had become the world number one for the fifth time in his career last week. Further, Nadal has now won 56 singles titles on clay.
9. PM Modi reaches Russia for informal talks with Prez Putin
PM Narendra Modi reached Russia’s Sochi for an informal summit with President Vladimir Putin, a month after holding talks in a similar format with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Wuhan. The day-long summit comes weeks after National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale visited Moscow reportedly to discuss US sanctions on Russian firms.
10. Kerala on high alert after rare disease kills 10
The Kerala Health Department has been put on high alert after the Nipah virus led to the death of around ten people in the state. There is no vaccine or medicine for the disease and the only form of treatment is intensive supportive care. The health department has decided to set up isolation wards to contain the virus.
11. Lionel Messi wins the European Golden Shoe for the 5th time
Barcelona forward Lionel Messi was crowned Europe’s top-goalscorer for the fifth time after scoring on 34 occasions in the La Liga for the Catalan side. Messi’s rival Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won the award four times in the past, ended up with 26 goals in the La Liga. Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah was second in the list with 32 goals.
12. Nicolas Maduro elected as Venezuela President for 2nd term
Nicolas Maduro has been elected as the President of Venezuela for a second term with over 67% votes. The election saw around 46% voter turnout, against the 80% registered in the last presidential election in 2013. The opposition leaders have called the elections “illegitimate”, claiming that there were widespread irregularities including “voter-buying” and “vote-rigging”.
13. Congo to use experimental vaccines as Ebola deaths rise to 26
A new experimental vaccine will be used to try and control the Ebola outbreak in the African nation of Congo after the death toll increased to 26. In the current outbreak, a total of 46 cases of hemorrhagic fever, including 21 confirmed cases, have been reported. This is Congo’s ninth Ebola outbreak since 1976, when the disease was first identified.
14. India is 6th wealthiest country in the world
India is the sixth wealthiest country in the world with a total wealth of USD 8,230 billion, according to the AfrAsia Bank Global Wealth Migration Review. The report further stated that the United States is the wealthiest country in the world with a total wealth of USD 62,584 billion.
China stood at the second place with USD 24,803 billion, while Japan was at the third place with USD 19,522 billion. The total wealth, in the report, refers to the private wealth held by all the individuals living in each country.
15. 26th BASIC Ministerial Meeting of Environment Ministers held in Durban
The 26th BASIC Ministerial Meeting of Environment Ministers was organised in Durban, South Africa. The grouping is a bloc of 4 nations including Brazil, South Africa, India and China. India was represented by Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan. BASIC nations decided to safeguard integrity of historic 2015 Paris Agreement, including values of common but differentiated tasks and equity.
16. CRPF raises Bastariya Battalion to combat Naxals activities in Bastar region of Chhattisgarh
In a bid to enhance combat capabilities in Naxal-hit area of Bastar district in Chhattisgarh, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), for the first time, has decided to include local representation in a special unit.
The special unit has been numbered as 241 and named as ‘Bastariya Battalion’, as all the candidates are selected from four highly Naxal infested district in Chhattisgarh, i.e Bijapur, Dantewada, Narayanpur and Sukma.
One of the unique characters of this 241 Bastariya Battalion is that the representation of 33 percent female candidates has been maintaining as per policy of the government.
A special recruitment drive was launched by the CRPF to recruit 743 rural ST candidates to give a fair chance to the aspirants.
17. Govt creating national registry of crimes against women
The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) is in the process of creating a national registry of crimes against women. The move comes against the backdrop of an around three-percent increase in crimes against women and a 12-percent rise in incidents of rape in 2016 as compared to 2015.
In 2015, as many as 34,651 cases of rape were registered. The number increased to 38,947 in 2016. Overall crimes against women rose from 3,29,243 in 2015 to 3,38,954 in 2016, according to the NCRB data.