International Relations - Current Affairs for August, 2016

International Relations Current Affairs for August, 2016

Month wise coverage of International Relations Current Affairs helps you improve your general knowledge and prepare for all competitive exams like IBPS, Bank PO, SBI PO, RRB, RBI, LIC, Specialist Officer, Clerk, SSC, UPSC, Railway etc. This section is updated daily with the most important events.

Preparing International Relations Current Affairs August, 2016

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  • Month & Year   
▼ India, US sign LEMOA agreement   [08-31-16]

India and the United States signed a logistics pact on 29th August during Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar’s visit to the American nation.

  • LEMOA stands for Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement, a tweaked Indian specific version of the Logistics Support Agreement which the US has with several nations that have close military to military cooperation
  • It is also one of three foundational agreements- the other two are Communications Interoperability and Security Memorandum of Agreement and Basic Exchange Cooperation Agreement for Geospatial Cooperation
  • These agreements are formed between US and countries it has close military ties with.
  • These foundational agreements are meant to build basic groundwork and promote interoperability between militaries by creating common standards and systems
  • LEMOA provides access to countries for designated military facilities on either side for refuelling and replenishment
  • Agreement will cover four areas port call, joint exercises, training and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.
  • Requirement agreed has to be carried out on case by case basis though this is not a basing agreement

▼ Myanmar sets out new path for internal peace process   [08-30-16]

Myanmar set out a new path after decades of military rule while India promised wholehearted support in every step of its journey as two countries resolved to deepen ties and actively cooperate to combat terrorism and insurgent activities in the region.

  • PM Narendra Modi held extensive talks with Myanmarese President U Hitin Kyaw in the first top level engagement with the new government of Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy and conveyed India’s full support to Myanmar’s internal peace process
  • Two sides have inked 4 MoUs to boost cooperation in connectivity, medicine and renewable energy besides resolving to deepen ties in range of sectors including agriculture, banking and power
  • PM Modi also said both sides recognised each other’s security interests remained sensitivity to each other’s strategic interests and concerns
  • Myanmar is considered one of the strategic neighbours of India and it shares a 1640 km long border with a number of NE states including the militancy infested Nagaland and Manipur
  • India has been raising issue of NE militant outfits having training camps in Myanmar
  • AYUSH Ministry has signed an MoU on cooperation in the field of traditional medicine with the ministry of health and sports government of Myanmar in New Delhi
  • MoU was signed by Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH and Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Myanmar Mr U Kyaw Tin-both countries have a heritage of religious, linguistic and ethnic ties
  • Myanmar has a substantial population of Indian origin and is the gateway to South East Asia and ASEAN with which India had been seeking greater economic integration through the Look East and Act East Policy.
  • Relationship of the two countries have been marked by close contacts with highest political level including cooperation in the field of health and medicine
  • MoU will enhance bilateral cooperation between the two countries in areas of traditional medicine.
  • Agreements signed will also facilitate the construction and upgrade of 69 bridges and the Kalewa Yargi road section of the India-Myanmar-Thailand trilateral highway project.

▼ Union Cabinet approves MoUs with Myanmar and South Africa   [08-25-16]

Union Cabinet has approved the signing of the MoU between India and Myanmar in the field of Traditional Systems of Medicine.

  • MoU will provide structured framework for cooperation between the two nations for promotion of Ayush/Traditional Systems of Medicine in Myanmar.
  • It will boost the importance of AYUSH systems of medicine and conservation, production and standardization.
Union Cabinet also approved an MoU inked between India and South Africa for cooperation in grassroots innovation. MoU holds that both countries will:
  • Organise programmes and seminars on innovation
  • Share open source technologies with each other.
  • Jointly develop projects (and including partnering with relevant industries in the respective countries).
  • Assist innovators in converting ideas into commercially viable discoveries.
  • Joint technology development and transfer of technology for societal benefit.
  • MoU will also provide a mechanism to create an ecosystem promoting inclusive innovation and entrepreneurship at grassroots levels.

▼ Air Services Agreement with Mauritius   [08-25-16]

  • The ASA with Mauritius was also approved; agreement is for updation of existing Air Services Agreement between the two countries signed on 28th January 1974
  • Updation is per ICAO template in that latest developments in the civil aviation sector should be considered and the objective will be to improve air connectivity between the two countries.
Essential features of the ASA are given below:
  • Both countries should be entitled to designate one/more airline.
  • Designated airlines of either country should be permitted to establish offices in the territory of the other country for the promotion and sale of air services
  • The designated airlines of the two countries shall have fair and equal opportunity to operate the agreed services on specified routes- routes and frequencies should be decided subsequently
  • Designated airline should be free to decide tariffs in respect of the agreed services at reasonable levels based on commercial considerations.
  • Designated airline of each party will be allowed to enter into cooperative marketing agreements with the designated carriers of the same party and the other party.
  • ASA has provisions pertaining to renovation or suspension of operating authorisation as well.
  • Existing route schedule annex to the ASA has been revised and new points of call have been added for enhanced connectivity.
  • Now Indian carriers can operate to any points in Fiji from India whereas Fiji carriers can establish direct operation in Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai and code share in Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad apart from points given for direct operation.
  • Kochi, Varanasi, Ahmedabad and Amritsar can be served via domestic code share operations.

▼ President of India extends greetings to people of Hungary, India signs MoU with Latvia   [08-22-16]

President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee extended greetings to the government and people on the eve of their National Day (August 2016).

  • The current president of the republic of Hungary is Dr. Janos Ader
  • Hungary also celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution on 20th August.
  • Meanwhile in other global news, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS) and University of Latvia on establishment of an academic chair in Ayurveda was signed today at AYUSH Bhawan, New Delhi.
  • The MoU will provide a structured framework for taking forward academic and research activities in Ayurveda through deputation of an Ayurveda Professor to the University of Latvia.
  • India’s relations with EU nations are fairly cordial with warm bilateral ties with most countries.
  • Recently, the United Kingdom broke apart from the EU following the historic Brexit vote
  • France and Germany are the two biggest nations in the EU

▼ 2 experts quit Panama Papers probe   [08-9-16]

Joseph Stiglitz, Mark Pieth quit Panama Probe citing lack of transparency and accountability.

  • Stiglitz and Swiss anti-corruption expert Mark Pieth joined a seven-member commission tasked with probing Panama's notoriously opaque financial system, but they say they found the government unwilling to back an open investigation.
  • Both quit the group after they say Panama refused to guarantee the committee's report would be made public.
  • The Panama Papers cover a period of almost 40 years, from 1977 until December 2015, and show that some companies set up in tax havens with the help of Mossack Fonseca may have been used for money laundering, arms and drug deals as well as tax evasion.

▼ New ASA signed between India and Lao PDR   [08-4-16]

Union Cabinet chaired by PM Shri Narendra Modi has given approval for signing new Air Services Agreement between India and Lao PDR.

  • Agreement will boost trade, investment, tourism and cultural exchange between the two nations through agreement in the civil aviation sector.
  • As per the agreement, the designated airlines of the two countries will have equal opportunity to operate the agreed services on specified routes.

▼ India inks MoU with Mozambique to import pulses   [08-4-16]

India has inked an MoU with Mozambique to import 3.75 lakh tonne pulses during 2016-2019.

  • MoU fixes a target of minimum quantities of import of tour and other pulses from Mozambique over three financial years.
  • India imported pulses worth USD 3.90 billion in 2015-2016 as against 2.78 billion in the previous fiscal
  • In quantity terms, pulse imports in 2015-2016 stood at 57.97 lakh tonnes as against 45.85 lakh tonnes in 2014-2015

▼ Indo Thai military exercise Maitree concludes at Krabi, Thailand   [08-1-16]

Indo-Thailand Military Exercise Maitree concluded at Krabi, Thailand. Exercise commenced on 15th July 2016 under Royal Thailand Army.

  • 90 soldiers of the Indian Army and Royal Thailand Army took part in the two week long exercise.
  • This included combined training, weapons familiarisation and equipment used by countries, analysis of groups, drills and tactics while operating in counter terrorism environment and modalities of Area domination operations in urban environment apart from operations like Cordon, Search and Seek and Destroy Missions.
  • Combined training helped the two nations to evolve common tactical procedures and drills to improve interoperability.