Current Affairs – June 2012 International Affairs
- Muslim Brotherhood (Freedom and Justice Party) candidate, Mohammed Morsi won the 2012 Presidential Election of Egypt on 24 June 2012. Mohammed Morsi is 60 years old. He is a trained American engineer and former lawmaker. He is the first Islamist elected as the head of an Arab state. He became the fifth president of Egypt and the first president from outside the military.
- The seventh G20 summit took place on 18, 19 June 2012, in the city of Los Cabos in Mexico. It is a twenty member group. the summit includes- South Africa, Canada, India, Mexico, United States, China, Japan, South Korea, Russia, Turkey, Argentina, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, European Union, France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, Australia.
- Highlights of the meeting are-
- The leaders of the world’s largest economies will help in boosting growth and job creation to repair the wounded global economy because of the European financial crisis.
- The Summit declaration also included investment in infrastructure in the developing countries; this decision would help in achieving global growth which was hauled due to the falling state of the world economy and the Eurozone crisis.
- All the Euro members of the G 20 will indulge in necessary policy measures to not only safe guard the integrity, but also stabilize the whole area. This would be done only by breaking the feedback loop between the sovereigns and the banks.
- The summit has also recognized the progress made by China in market-determined exchanged rates.
Owing to the debt loaded 17 nation Euro zone, India on 19 June 2012 announced a $10 Billion contribution to the already existing IMF’s $430 Billion financial money. The announcement was made by Manmohan Singh in the Seventh G-20, Mexico. The amount was contributed to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for the bailout fund that would help them ease off a little burden from the debt scenario. The seventh G 20 take took place in the Mexican resort of Los Cabos. The seventh summit was headed by Mexico’s President, Felipe de Jesús Calderón Hinojosa. The next G20 Summit is scheduled in 2013 with Russia as the new chair. The G20 is the premier forum for international cooperation on the most important aspects of the international economic and financial agenda. It brings together the world’s major advanced and emerging economies. The G20 includes 19 country members and the European Union, which together represent around 90% of global GDP, 80% of global trade and two-thirds of the world’s population. The G 20 started in the year 1999, but it has been regular only since 2008.
- Raja Parvez Ashraf, the senior Pakistan People’s Party leader, was appointed the 17th Prime Minister of Pakistan on 22 June 2012. Ashraf was elected as the Prime Minister following the Supreme Court’s verdict to debar Yousaf Raza Gilani from his office on 19 June 2012 in a contempt of court case. Before being elected as the Prime Minister of the country, he served as the federal minister for water and power, and information and technology in the cabinet headed by former Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. Previously, the Supreme Court of Pakistan on 19 June 2012 debarred Pakistan Prime Minister Yusuf Raja Gilani from his office. The court’s ruling also disqualified Gilani as the member of the National Assembly, the lower house of the Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament). Gilani was convicted for violating the article 63(1) (g) (contempt of court) of the constitution of Pakistan on 26 April 2012 by the Supreme Court. The court’s verdict came following Gilani’s refusal to probe cases of corruption against Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari. The three-judge Bench of the apex Pakistani court headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry held Gilani, Pakistan’s longest serving Prime Minister, ineligible for the post since 26 April 2012 when the court awarded him a symbolic 30-second sentence for the contempt of court.
- The New Democracy Party leader Antonis Samara sworn in as the Prime Minister of Greece on 20 June 2012. Samaras’s centre-right New Democracy party bagged 129 seats of 300 in the parliamentary elections held on 17 June 2012.The New Democracy Party formed the new government with the support of socialist party Pasok (with 33 seats) and the Democratic Left party (with 17 seats). The fresh elections were held in Greece following the political parties’ failure to reach an agreement on the results of the first election held on 6 May 2012.Greece has been passing through the severe economic crisis which started in 2008. The country which makes nearly 2 per cent of the gross economic output of the Euro zone has seriously been contemplating the option of pulling out of the group. The exit of Greece from the euro zone raises a serious question over the future of European Union as many larger European economies such as Spain, Italy, Potugal are also likely to follow in the steps of Greece. To rescue Greece out of the economic crisis the European Union and International Monetary Fund had granted a 110 billion Euro package to the country in 2010, followed by a 130 billion Euro package in 2012.
- Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi finally accepted her 1991 nobel peace prize in Oslo on 16 July after spending a total of 15 years under house arrest and said full political freedom in her country was still a long way off. “Absolute peace in our world is an unattainable goal, she said in her acceptance speech during her first trip to Europe in nearly 25 years. Suu kye, the Oxford University-educated daughter of General Aung San, Myanmar’s assassinated independence hero, advocated caution about transformation in Myanmar, whose quasi-civilian government continues to hold political prisoners. Suu Kyi, who spent a total of 15 years under house arrest between 1989 and her release in late 2010, never left Myanmar even during brief periods of freedom after 1989, afraid the military would not let back in.
- Myanmar President Thein Sein declared emergency in West Myanmar on 10 June 2012. This decision took following the sectarian violence between the Buddhists and Muslims in the past week that left seven people dead and hundreds of properties ravaged in Rakhine state of west Myanmar.Conflict in troubled Rakhine state blazed after a Buddhist woman was killed in May 2012, followed by an attack on a bus carrying Muslims. The clashes began on 4 June 2012 when a violent mob attacked a bus in Taungup, Rakhine province, apparently mistakenly believing some of the passengers were responsible for the earlier rape and murder of a Buddhist woman. Rakhine state is named after the ethnic Rakhine Buddhist community, which is in the majority in the state. The state also has a sizeable Muslim population, including the Rohingya minority. The Rohingya are a Muslim ethnic group and are considered to be the refugees who have illegally entered Myanmar from neighboring Bangladesh.
- The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) 2012 ended in Beijing on 7 June 2012, with member states agreeing to further cooperation in a variety of fields. Leaders and officials from the four SCO observer countries of Mongolia, Iran, Pakistan and India were also present at the summit. Leaders across the participating nations held a broader discussion over the issues like Afghanistan crisis and the Iranian nuclear programme. The member states of the SCO adopted 10 agreements on the concluding day of the summit. The agreement includes the Declaration on Building a Region with Lasting Peace and Common Prosperity, the Strategic Plan for the Medium-Term Development of the SCO, and the SCO Regulations on Political and Diplomatic Measures and Mechanism of Response to Events Jeopardizing Regional Peace, Security and Stability. The SCO also decided to grant Afghanistan observer status and accept Turkey as a dialogue partner. Chinese President Hu Jintao offered a 10 billion U.S. dollars loan to the SCO which will be used be used to promote the development of SCO members. The SCO, an intergovernmental mutual security organization, was founded in Shanghai on 15 June 2001. The group has six full time members at present namely China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The Central Asian nation Kyrgyzstan will host the 2013 summit of SCO.
- A Boeing MD83 aircraft crashed in Lagos, the largest Nigerian city on 3 June 2012. All the 153 people on board were killed in the worst air disaster of Nigeria. The flight was traveling from Nigeria’s central capital of Abuja to Lagos in the nation’s southwest. Nigeria with 160 million people is Africa’s most populous nation.
- Pakistan successfully test-fired the indigenously developed Hatf-VII (Babur) cruise missile on 5 June 2012. Hatf-VII is capable of carrying both nuclear and conventional warheads. The missile has a range of 700 km. Earlier on 29 May 2012 Pakistan had successfully carried out the test of indigenously developed Short Range Surface to Surface Multi Tube Missile Hatf IX (NASR) followed by the test of nuclear-capable cruise missile Hatf-VIII (Ra’ad) whose test was conducted on 31 May 2012.
- An Egyptian court awarded former President Hosni Mubarak with life imprisonment on 2 June 2012. The former autocrat was convicted given his involvement in the murder of protesters during the uprising which dethroned him in 2011. The trial against Mubarak began in August 2011.