International Current Affairs - 2020

8 September: International Literacy Day observed

The International Literacy Day (ILD) is being observed every year across the world on 8 September to emphasize importance of literacy to individuals, society and communities. The day was instituted in 1966 by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). This year it was 54th International Literacy Day.

ILD 2019 theme announced by UNESCO was “Literacy and Multilingualism”. It seeks to highlight importance of embracing linguistic diversity in education and literacy development as it is central to addressing persisting literacy challenges and to achieving Sustainable Development Goals.

Background

The International Literacy Day (ILD) was officially proclaimed by UNESCO in its 14th Session in November 1966. Since then, it is celebrated annually by member countries of UNESCO.

Why September 8th? On this day in year 1965, World Congress of Ministers of Education had met for first time in Tehran, Iran to discuss the programme of education at international level.

Purpose of this day:

(i) To mobilize public opinion in favour of struggle against illiteracy.

(ii) To disseminate information on literacy and

(iii) To raise public awareness and the significance of literacy for individual and national development.

EX TSENTR 2019: India, Pakistan forces to be part of military exercise in Russia

Armies of India, Pakistan will take part in this year’s military exercise TSENTR 2019 that will be conducted by Russia from September 9 to 23, 2019. This will be the first time that forces from India and Pakistan will participate in multilateral exercise together since airstrikes conducted by Indian force, deep in Pakistan’s Balakot district in February 2019. Earlier armies of India and Pakistan had met last year as part of military exercise conducted by Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) – also held in Russia.

Background

Russia holds major military exercise every year at one of its four military Commands i.e Vostok (East), Zapad (West), TSENTR (Centre) and Kavkas (South). It rotates through four main Russian operational strategic commands.

About Exercise TSENTR 2019

It will be conducted as part of the annual series of large scale exercises that form part of Russian Armed Forces’ annual training cycle. This year it will be conducted by Central Military Commission of Russia at Donguz training ranges, Orenburg, Russia. Apart from host Russia, military contingents from China, Tajikistan, India, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Pakistan and Uzbekistan will also take part in this mega event.

This year’s exercise is aimed at evolving drills of participating armies in fight against international terrorism and ensuring military security in strategic central Asian region. Its strategic measures will mainly focus on evaluating level of troop preparedness, raising level of inter- operability, acquisition of required skills and demonstrate readiness of participating armies.

It will comprise two modules-

(i) 1st module: It will include counter- terror operations, repelling air strikes, reconnaissance operations and defensive measures.

(ii) 2nd Module: It will focus on offensive operations.