Places in News Current Affairs - 2020

Places in news and current affairs for preparation of the Geography papers and map locations for UPSC Civil Services and State related examinations of 2019.

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China’s interests in the new country Bougainville

Recently, Bougainville, a chain of islands voted for a referendum of independence from Papua Guinea. The referendum saw 85% voter turnout choosing Papua Guinea as second option. The referendum was introduced because the peace agreement signed before 20 years ended. The agreement was signed to end nine year conflict or civil war that killed almost 10% of the country’s population. Employment and land acquisition in the island by copper mines (owned by Papua Guinea, Australia and other foreign countries) were the major reason behind the war.


The independence of the country sends strong signals to other movements across the Pacific, especially New Caledonia (a French collectivity) that is preparing itself for the second referendum. The other important message that the independence sends is for the so-called traditional partners of the Pacific namely US, UK, Australia, France and Japan. The referendum has taken place during the period when the strategic anxiety among the traditional partners of the Pacific is at its peak.

China’s interests

The prevailing situation in the Pacific is advantageous to China. China seeks to influence an independent Bougainville. The political and economic presence of china in the country has increased already. China’s support to the island will increase its support among the Pacific islands against Taiwan. It is important to note that Taiwan recently lost two of its Pacific allies this year. Australia, UK and US believe that there are possibilities of China bringing Bougainville into its debt trap diplomacy. China is also interested in Bougainville for its rich fisheries, copper, gold and other resources. Building strong ties with the country will help China increase its presence in the Pacific.

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World’s New Nation: Bougainville gains independence from Papua New Guinea

On December 11, 2019, the South Pacific Archipelago of Bougainville voted to become independent of Papua New Guinea. Around 98% of 1,81,067 voters voted to get independent from Papua New Guinea.


It is the largest island of the Solomon Islands Archipelago. The island has the world’s largest copper deposits. The most widely spoken language in the country is Halia.

The country is yet to prove its recognition in the United Nations. In India, Godman Nithyananda is said to have built a new country called “Kailassa” near Ecuador. Kailassa is also yet to prove its recognition in United Nations.

Godman Nithyananda

Recently Godman Nithyananda is said to have created a new country called “Kailassa” near Ecuador in South America. The country is said to have separate flag, national animal, passport entry, visa, separate currency, etc. However, it is essential to obtain international diplomatic recognition to become a new country.

Diplomatic Recognition

By international law, a country should recognize the other for the later to become an independent country. The recognition can be proved by the new country through United Nation Resolution. If majority of the countries vote in favour of membership of the country, then the country enters world map and begins to exist legally. ‘There are 195 countries in the world today that are recognized by the United Nations.

Apart from Diplomatic recognition, the countries of North America and South America assent on Montevideo Convention.

Montevideo Convention

The Montevideo Convention is a treaty that was signed in 1933. The convention defines rights and duties of statehood. It lists the criteria for a country to become independent and declare its sovereignty. The most important factor of the convention is that it prohibited the use of military force to gain sovereignity.

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