Defence & Security Current Affairs - 2019

Defence Current Affairs of 2018-19 related to India’s Defence, Indian Armed Forces, Defence Production, Defence Acquisition and related matters for SSC, States Civils, UPSC and Other Competitive Examinations.

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Kargil to Kohima 4,500 km ultra-marathon to mark 20 years of ‘Vijay Diwas’: IAF

To commemorate 20 years of ‘Vijay Diwas’ or ‘Kargil Vijay Diwas’ (named after successful Operation Vijay), the Indian Air Force is organising an ultra-marathon named as ‘Kargil to Kohima (K2K): Glory Run’ spanning over 4,500 km from Kargil to Kohima. The marathon run was flagged off by Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa in a ceremony held at Vayu Bhavan in New Delhi.

Key Highlights of Ultra-Marathon

This unique expedition of ultra-marathon from Kargil to Kohima commencing on 21 September 2019 will culminate on 6 November 2019. It will be from Kargil War Memorial at Dras in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), and Kohima War Cemetery in Kohima (Nagaland).

Why Kargil to Kohima? Kohima and Kargil are two forward most outposts of India in east and north where two of the most fierce battles of modern India were fought in 1944 and 1999, respectively. The event is to commemorate 20th year of victory in Kargil war.

Objective: Aim of expedition is to promote awareness for safety of pedestrians and recently launched ‘Fit India Movement’ by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, along with paying tribute to bravehearts who made the supreme sacrifices.

Expedition Team:  A composite team of 25 air warriors consisting of officers and airmen, including one woman officer Flight Lietutant Rishab Jeet Kaur and Warrant Officer Indra Pal Singh (51) will also run in this ultra-marathon. The expedition is led by Squadron Leader Suresh Razdan, a Su-30 aircraft pilot.

The team has been selected after regressive selection trials and is undergoing their 1st phase of strenuous training. This will be followed by 2nd phase of training at Leh, Ladakh.

The team will cover distance of more than 4,500 mm in 45 days by running an average of 100 mm per day.

Adventure Activities: Team will undertake adventure activities such as camping and living outdoors, managing and surviving in snow, rain and extreme climate through varied terrain of Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar, West-Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Assam and Nagaland.

NOTE: ‘Operation Vijay’ was India”s limited war against Pakistan in Kargil in 1999

5th Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) held in Vladivostok

The fifth edition of Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) was held in Vladivostok, Russia from September 4 to 6, 2019. It was aimed at roviding a platform for discussing issues aimed at expanding international cooperation in Asia-Pacific region and developing the economy of Russias Far East.  The participants in Summit were India, Malaysia, Japan, Australia, and South Korea. India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi was Chief Guest at the event being hosted by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Key Takeaways from Summit

India’s Line of Credit (LoC): PM Modi while addressing Plenary Session of 5th EEF announced LoC worth $1 billion for the development of the Far East region of Russia. This is the first-ever region-specific LoC extended by India in a foreign country.

Act Far East policy: PM Modi also announced launching of India’s “Act Far East” policy. Russia’s Far East is rich in resource, but is sparsely populated region. This policy aims to tap this region’s resources potential and also find opportunities for skilled workers to find employment in this region. It also ties in well with Indo-Pacific concept, and opens up possibilities for India to use Arctic route to connect with northern Europe.

About Eastern Economic Forum (EEF)

It is annual event held at Vladivostok, Russia to encourage foreign investment in the Russian Far East. It was established by decree of Russia President Vladimir Putin in 2015.

It is aimed at supporting economic development of Russia’s Far East and to expand international cooperation in Asia-Pacific region.

Objectives:

(i) Strengthening ties between Russian business and federal, regional, and local government bodies on side and international investment community on other side.

(ii) Conducting comprehensive expert assessment of Russia’s Far East economic potential and improving its competitiveness and attractiveness to investors.

(iii) Showcasing new investment and business opportunities such as advanced special economic zones (SEZs), Vladivostok Free Port, and state support for high-potential investment projects.

Events at this Forum: These are held in the form of panel sessions, roundtables, business breakfasts, televised debates and business dialogues devoted to Russia’s relationships with various countries.