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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On May 17, 2019 in a landmark decision, Taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage thus giving gay couples the ‘Right to Marry’.
- About: The Taiwanese parliament took the historic step by passing a law in favour of same-sex couples and allowing them to form ‘exclusive permanent unions’.
- The bill was passed on 17 May which is celebrated annually as the ‘International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia’.
- The law contains a clause that allows couples to apply for a ‘marriage registration’ with the government agencies.
- It also offer few adoption rights to same-sex couples like allowing spouses to adopt biological children of their partner. But does not allows same-sex couples to co-adopt.
- LGBTQ Rights: Taiwan has long been a hub for LGBT activism. Even its annual gay pride parade is the largest in the region. The Taiwanese LGBTQ community has now been campaigning for years to have similar and equal marriage rights as heterosexual couples. The move marks a huge victory for the community’s struggle and rights.
- Significance: With even president of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen campaigning for a platform of marriage equality, and the historic judgement that followed, this places Taiwan at the vanguard of Asia’s rapidly growing gay rights movement.
- Importance: It is a good start and major step towards true equality and ending discrimination based on sexual orientation.
Geographical Facts: Taiwan
- It is officially called as Republic of China (ROC) and is a self-governing island nation in East Asia.
- States Neighbouring Taiwan: The Philippines in south, People’s Republic of China (PRC) in West, Japan in northeast.
- It is in western Pacific Ocean and lies about 160 km off the coast of southeastern China (SCS).
Tags: Exclusive Permanent Unions’ • International Day Against Homophobia Transphobia and Biphobia • LGBTQ • LGBTQ Rights • People's Republic of China • PRC • Republic of China • Right to Marry • Same Sex Marriage • SCS • South China Sea • Taiwan • Tsai Ing-wen
India has recently joined a major global initiative called ‘Christchurch call to action’ to combat extremism and terrorism online and make internet a safe and secure place. It was signed by a group of governments and major tech companies at a summit in Paris.
- Background: New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and French President Emmanuel Macron recently launched an ambitious new initiative called “Christchurch Call”, which is aimed at curbing extremism online. The initiative was pushed by Ms Ardern in backdrop of extremist attacks on two mosques in New Zealand city on 15 March 2019, in which a white supremacist gunned down 51 people and broadcasted live footage on Facebook. This gave rise to growing realisation that current abuse of social media by extremists must be countered.
- Participants: A total of 18 countries including European Union (EU) supported the initiative along representatives of online giants like Facebook, Google, YouTube, Microsoft, Amazon and Twitter.
- Objective: To curb online extremism by stopping abuse of Internet by extremists. It also calls for an open, free and secure internet to foster economic growth, enhance social inclusiveness and promote connectivity.
- Argument: The dissemination of such extremist content online has adverse impacts on the human rights of victims, on collective security of individuals involved as well as people all over the world.
About Christchurch Call Agreement
- It is a non-binding set of agreements to combat spread of hate and violent content online. It was signed by a group of governments and major tech companies at a summit in Paris
- Unique: It is believed to be first document of its type like one which is signed by both major governments and private companies.
- All signatories pledge to eliminate violent, terrorist and extremist content on social media as well as other online platforms. But pledge does not contain any regulatory or enforcement measures, and it would be completely up to each individual country and company to decide on how it would honour its voluntary commitments.
- The pledge also does not include the definition of ‘violent extremist content’, and it is up to individual companies to decide on what constituted objectionable material.
- It asks member nations to adopt and enforce laws which ban objectionable material, and set guidelines on how each countries traditional media can report acts of terrorism without amplifying them.
- It asks tech companies to comply with their terms of service, and re-evaluate their algorithms which direct online users towards extremist content and at the same time commit to redirecting people looking for extremist material online.
The United States declined to join the Christchurch call to action initiative. Following are the signatories Nations:
Tags: Amazon • Christchurch Call to Action • Combat Extremism • Emmanuel Macron • European Union • Facebook • French President • Google • Jacinda Ardern • Microsoft • New Zealand's Prime Minister • Online Content • Paris Summit • Twitter • United States • YouTube