International Current Affairs - 2019

Latest International Current Affairs 2019 with news summaries and current events in International developments, geopolitical, organizations, groupings and fora related updates for India and world with all important national news updates and events for the year 2019.

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Palestine takes over chairmanship of G77

Palestine has taken over the chairmanship of G77 from Egypt. Palestine will be formally elected chair at the annual G77 ministerial meeting, scheduled to take place in mid-September.

The chairmanship of the G77 is based on the system of geographical rotation. 2019 was Asia’s turn and the Asian group had unanimously endorsed Palestine. Egypt was representing the African Group of countries.

Palestine’s chairmanship of G77 which is the biggest UN block assumes great significance at a time it is being increasingly blacklisted by the Trump administration of US. Even though Palestine is not the member-state of UN, Palestine has been recognised by 136 UN members and has the status of non-member observer state similar to Holy city of Vatican.

G77

G77 is a coalition of 134 developing nations (including China) at the United Nations. Traditionally G77 speaks with a single voice before the 193-member General Assembly and also at all UN committee meetings and at international conferences.

G77 was formed on 15 June 1964 by the “Joint Declaration of the Seventy-Seven Countries” issued at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The group was credited with a common stance against apartheid and for supporting global disarmament.

G77 and China

The G77 grouping considers China as the member state. China is providing consistent political support to the G77 and even makes financial contributions. But it doesn’t consider itself as the member of the group. Hence official statements of the G77 are delivered in the name of the Group of 77 and China.

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U.K. lawmakers reject Brexit deal

The British Parliament has rejected the Brexit deal proposed by the Prime Minister Theresa May. The British House of Commons voted 432 -202 against the deal struck between Britain’s government and the EU in November.

Backstop provisions

The conservative objectors who were supporters of Brexit have also voted against the deal fearful of the “backstop” provisions. As per the Backstop provisions, Britain would leave the EU in March 2019, single market in December 2020, but stay in the customs union for longer.

The Backstop provisions would keep trade rules between the world’s fifth-biggest economy and its largest export market almost unchanged for a transition period running to the end of 2020. The conservatives fear that these provisions would keep the UK too closely bound by EU regulations.

What’s next?

The UK has now three options to choose from since UK is bound to leave EU by March. The options are:

  • UK can now to reach to EU to further modify the agreement. But this doesn’t seem likely because EU leaders have made it clear that it was the best compromise available.
  • The other option is the exit without any deal. This would be a doomsday scenario which would trigger a massive recession in Britain and markedly slow the European Union’s economic growth. This doomsday scenario would become inevitable if British parliament votes against the deal
  • There could be another referendum on Brexit deal in Britain. Demands for another referendum is also gaining momentum since the previous one favoured the Brexit with a narrow 52 to 48 per cent

The best possible practical option which is now doing rounds in Britain is to extend Britain’s departure date. But the EU diplomats warn that extension would only be for a few months.

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