International Current Affairs December 2015 (Part 2)

Conservative Won Argentina’s Presidential Election

  • Conservative opposition candidate Mauricio Macri has won Argentina’s Presidential election on November 22, His victory ended 12 years of leftist rule. Macri got 51.4% of the votes and 48.6% for the defeated candidate Scioli, with 99% of ballots counted.
  • Maori’s victory ends a political era dominated by Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and her late-husband Nestor Kirchner. Macri had promised a break from Kirchner’s leftist economic policy, promising a more business-friendly environment in the country.
  • Kirchner has ruled the country since taking over from Nestor in 2007, and has reached the end of her two-term limit. Scioli prioritised policies aimed at helping Argentina’s poorest.
  • Argentina is facing inflation and is involved in a legal battle against two American hedge funds that reject its plans to restructure the $ 100 billion in debt it defaulted on in 2001.

United Nations told to ‘Redouble’ Fight against Islamic State

  • The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) unanimously approved a resolution on November 20, 2015 calling on all nations to redouble and coordinate action to prevent further attacks by Islamic State terrorists and other extremist groups linked to Al-Qaeda.
  • The UNSC members vote on the French-sponsored counter terrorism resolution at United Nations headquarters. Russian President Vladimir Putin also called for global cooperation to combat terrorism in a separate incident. Chinese President Xi Jinping also pledged cooperation in the fight against terror.

Also Read>> National Current Affairs- Nov (Part 6)

ASEAN Leaders Launched Regional Economic Bloc

  • Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) leaders declared the establishment of an EU-style regional economic bloc, ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) on November 22 2015. AEC will be a single market with a free flow of goods, capital and skilled labour in the region.
  • The Kuala Lumpur declaration on the establishment of the AEC was also signed by the leaders of 10-nation grouping in front of world leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
  • The AEC will integrate South-East Asia’s diverse economies, a region with 620 million people and a combined gross domestic product of $ 2.4 trillion. ASEAN grouping includes Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
  • The ASEAN leaders also adopted the declaration on ‘ASEAN 2025, Forging Ahead Together’. ASEAN is working towards a community that is politically cohesive, economically integrated and socially responsible.
  • ASEAN 2025 meant for a community committed to work with external partners to strengthen cooperation in combating non-traditional security challenges like terrorism, drug related crimes, human trafficking and maritime issues through various initiatives and projects.

23rd APEC Economic Leaders Summit Held

  • 23rd Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders Summit was held at Manila, Philippines on November 18 and 19, 2015. The summit was chaired by Philippines President Benigno S. Aquino III.
  • Afrer the conclusion of the summit, the leaders from 21 member-countries issued the 2015 Leaders Declaration titled Building Inclusive Economies, Building a Better World: A Vision for an Asia-Pacific Community.
  • The theme of the Summit was building Inclusive Economies and building a better world. Peru will chair. APEC throughout 2016 and host the 24th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting. The idea of APEC was firstly publicly broached by former Prime Minister of Australia Bob Hawke during a speech in Seoul, Korea on January 31, 1989.

US House Passed Bill Tightening Security on Syrian Refugees

  • A bill to raise barriers against Syrian and Iraqi refugees entering the US has been passed by the House of Representatives on November 19, 2015. The move was approved by 289 members in favour against 137 opposed members.
  • The bill effectively ignored President Barack Obama’s refugee settlement plan and his threat to veto the bill. The curbs will see sharp increases in the security screenings of Syrian and Iraqi migrants, which could in turn spark their entry into the US being suspended for years.
  • It came following the atrocities in Paris where 129 people were killed and hundreds more injured in a series of attacks by Islamic State (ISIS) extremists. Only three Republicans voted against the bill, while 48 Democrats broke ranks by voting in favour of the new’ measures.

Russia Signed Deal to Build Egypt’s First Nuclear Plant

  • Russia signed two agreements to finance and build Egypt’s first nuclear power plant on November 19, 2015 in a ceremony attended by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi. The first agreement is signed for the construction and operation of four 1200 MW reactors. Under the second deal, Russia granted a 35-year loan to Egypt.
  • Egyptian President Sissi announced the project in February, 2015 during the visit of Vladimir Putin. At^ that time, a Memorandum of Understandings (MoU) was also signed.
  • The plant is to be built in Dabaa on the Mediterranean coast in the North-West of the country. Egypt laid the foundation for the facility during the regime of President Hosni Mubarak in January, 2011.

Read More>> International Current Affairs  (Part 1)

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Mansi Agarwal
Mansi Agarwal

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