Current Affairs, News & Facts of 16 Sep 2015

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  • Hungary Declares state of Emergency over Refugee Influx

     

    Hungary Declares state of Emergency over Refugee Influx

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    • The Hungarian Government has declared a state of emergency in its two regions of Csongrad and Bacs-Kiskun  to cope with the influx of refugees. It was declared by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
    • Austria which is the main route for refugees crossing the European Union has also imposed new restrictions at its borders. Thousands of refugees have poured into Austria in recent days, rushing through Hungary because Hungary has shut its border with Serbia leaving many desperate refugees stranded at the border.  
    • Over 200,000 refugees have reached Hungary so far in 2015, nearly all by walking across the southern border with Serbia but Hungary has declared emergency now as almost 10,000 people were detained for illegally crossing the border from Serbia.
    • Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has indicated that asylum requests from refugees trying to enter Hungary from Serbia will be rejected, because Serbia is a safe country where refugees do not risk war or persecution.

    Note :- Being a central European nation, Hungary had emerged as epicenter of a refugee crisis which had erupted after an unprecedented number of people from North African (Libya, Eritrea, Sudan etc) and Middle Eastern (Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan etc) countries started relocating to European Countries for seeking refuge and better life conditions

    Read more on "European Migrant crisis"

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  • North Korea’s Yongbyon nuclear facility resumes operation

     

    North Korea’s Yongbyon nuclear facility resumes operation

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    • North Korea has resumed normal operations at the Yongbyon complex, the country's main nuclear facility, allowing the country to improve both the quality and the quantity of its nuclear weapons. The reactor is capable of producing around six kilos of plutonium a year - enough for one nuclear bomb.
    • North Korea's National Aerospace Development Administration indicates that it is preparing for a possible satellite launch that would likely utilize ballistic missile technology banned by the United Nations Security Council.
    • Yongbyon’s reactor was shut down in 2007 under a six-nation aid-for-disarmament accord. But the dictatorial Kim Jong Un regime vowed to restart it again in 2013, following its third nuclear test and amid high regional tensions.
    • Currently North Korea is under United Nations economic sanctions for its strategic nuclear weapons programme and it was further tightened after its 2013 test.

    North Korea's Nuclear Power :-

    • It was during 2009 when North Korea declared that it had developed a nuclear weapon and has become a fully-fledged nuclear power. 

    Series of Nuclear Test:-

    • North Korea had successfully conducted its first nuclear test in October 2006 with yield less than a kiloton. The second test was conducted on May 25, 2009 with estimated yield between 2 and 7 kilotons. It is also believed that in 2013, third underground nuclear test was carried.

    Satellites for military use :-

    • North's aerospace agency said it is ready to launch new satellites aboard long-range rockets as part of celebrations of next month's ruling communist party anniversary.After several failures, North Korea put its first satellite into space with a long-range rocket launched in late 2012. 

    North Korea's stand on "Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)"

    • North Korea is fourth fully-fledged nuclear country after India, Israel and Pakistan which has never joined the NPT. North Korea had acceded to the NPT in 1985 but never came into compliance and withdrawn itself in 2003

     

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  • Indian-origin author Sunjeev Sahota shortlisted for 2015 Man Booker Prize for Fiction

     

    Indian-origin author Sunjeev Sahota shortlisted for 2015 Man Booker Prize for Fiction

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    Indian-origin British author Sunjeev Sahota is among six writers who has been shortlisted for the prestigious Man Booker Prize for Fiction for 2015 for his novel "The Year of the Runaways" .Others winners of  Man Booker Prize for Fiction for 2015 are :- 

    1. Tom McCarthy (Britain) 
    2. Anne Tyler (America) 
    3. Hanya Yanagihara( America) 
    4. Marlon James (Jamaica)
    5. Chigozie Obioma (Nigeria)


    Sunjeev Sahota was born in 1981 and is a third-generation British-Indian debuted with "Ours Are the Streets" in 2011, about a British Pakistani youth who becomes a suicide bomber. Sahota, was adjudged the Granta Best Young British Novelist 2013.

    "The Year of the Runaways"  is his second novel which was published in June 2015 it deals with the experience of illegal immigrants from the Indian subcontinent in Britain.

    About Man Booker Prize for Fiction :- 

    • The Man Booker Prize for Fiction is a literary prize awarded each year for the best original novel, written in the English language, and published in the UK.
    • Previously, the prize was open only to authors from the UK and Commonwealth nations, Ireland and Zimbabwe. It was first was awarded in 1969 and is sponsored by the Man Group
    • This is the second year that the prize, first awarded in 1969, is open to writers of any nationality, writing originally in English and published in Britain
    • The prize carries 50,000 pounds and it is of great significance for the book trade as the winner of prize is generally assured of international renown and success.

     

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  • Indian-American teen entrepreneur Swetha Prabhakaran to get White House award

     

    Indian-American teen entrepreneur Swetha Prabhakaran to get White House award

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    • A 15-year-old Indian-American teen Swetha Prabhakaran has been selected by the White House for the prestigious Champions of Change award for empowering the community by imparting Internet coding through her non-profit organisation " Everybody Code Now! "
    • Prabhakaran, 15, a junior at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, in Virginia, founded non profit Everybody Code Now! to empower the next generation of youth to become engineers, scientists, and entrepreneurs.
    • Swetha was born in Indianapolis whose Parents, immigrated from Tamil Nadu's Tirunelveli in 1998. Her father Prabakaran Murugaiah is the founder and CEO of techfetch.com. He lives in Ashburn, Virginia - a suburb in Washington DC
    • Under Swetha's direction, Everybody Code Now! has taught hundreds of students how to code and has raised thousands of dollars for STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) activities in schools.

    About Champions of Change award :-

    • Champions of Change award is given to those who support working families and have helped to bring about change within their companies, communities or organizations.
    • The 'Champions of Change' programme was created as an opportunity for the White House to feature individuals doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities.
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  • Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina wins UN Award for Leadership on Climate Change

     

    Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina wins UN Award for Leadership on Climate Change

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    • Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh has been announced as one of the winners of the United Nations Champions of the Earth award in recognition of her country’s initiatives to address climate change.
    • UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has selected her for United Nations Champions of the Earth award in (Policy Leadership category) - for 2015 to recognise her far-reaching initiatives to address climate change.
    • UNEP noted that Bangladesh is one of the world’s most populated countries, with over 159 million people. It is also one of the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Cyclones, floods and droughts have long been part of the country’s history, but they have intensified in recent years.
    • The awards will be presented to her at a special ceremony to be held on September 27, 2015 at closing ceremony of United Nations Sustainable Development Summit 2015

    Climate Change Strategy of Bangladesh

     

    • Bangladesh is the first country to set up its own Climate Change Trust Fund supported by nearly $300 million of domestic resources from 2009-2012. 
    • The government currently earmarks 6-7 per cent of its annual budget - some 1 billion USD - on climate change adaptation, with only 25 per cent of this coming from international donors.
    • Under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Bangladesh Constitution was amended in 2011 to include a constitutional directive to the State to protect the environment and natural resources for current and future generations.

    About UN Environment Programme (UNEP)

    • Formation -                   5 June 1972
    • Headquarters  -          Nairobi, Kenya
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  • Indian-origin MP Seema Malhotra appointed shadow chief secretary in UK

     

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    • Indian-origin British MP Seema Malhotra has been appointed as the shadow chief secretary for Treasury by the newly elected Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Seema Malhotra became MP for the London seat of Feltham and Heston in 2011 in a by-election following the death of Alan Keen (Conservative). 
    • She was given the newly-created role of shadow minister for preventing violence against women and girls by the then Labour leader Ed Miliband in  August 2014. She will be shadow chancellor John McDonnell's number two in the shadow Treasury team. Prior to this Seema was workeing in business consultancy before entering the parliament. 
    • Extreme left-wing MP Jeremy Corbyn was on Sunday elected leader of Britain's main Opposition Labour Party in a landslide victory in London. The result has also sparked talk of a deep split within the Labour party that was thrown into turmoil by David Cameron's shock May election win.
    • In the recent election left-wing MP Jeremy Corbyn had gained 2,51,417 or 59.5 per cent of first preference votes - 40 per cent more than his nearest rival Andy Burnham, who got 19 per cent. Yvette Cooper was third on 17 per cent and Liz Kendall a distant fourth with 4.5 per cent of the votes.
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  • UN adopted Resolution proclaiming 9 December as International Genocide Commemoration Day

     

    UN adopted Resolution proclaiming 9 December as International Genocide Commemoration Day

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    • United Nations General Assembly has adopted a resolutions that proclaims 9 December as International Day of Commemoration & Dignity of the Victims of the Crime of Genocide and of the Prevention of this Crime.
    • The 9th of December is the anniversary of the signing of the 1948 Genocide Convention. The International Day is intended to commemorate and honour the victims of the crime of genocide around the world, and to raise awareness of the Convention and its role in protecting populations from future genocides
    • The resolution was adopted without a vote in the 193-member Assembly and it reiterates the responsibility of each individual State to protect its populations from genocide through appropriate and necessary means.

    What is Genocide ?

    Genocide is defined by the UN as a crime that is committed against members of a national, ethnic or religious group solely because they are members of that group. Genocide also entails there being intent to exterminate a particular group.

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