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November 03, 2018: National Current Affairs
1. Maulana Sami assassinated in his Rawalpindi home
• Former senator and chief of his own faction of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam Maulana Samiul Haq was assassinated at his house in the strictly guarded Bahria Town`s Safari Villas II on November 2, 2018 evening.
• Maulana Sami was in his bedroom when unidentified persons entered the house and stabbed him multiple times. He was rushed to the Safari hospital, which is situated 300 metres from his residence, where doctors pronounced him dead on arrival.
• Maulana Sami had been f acing a threat to his life but he refused to keep a police security guard with him.
2. China keen to begin new era in Pakistan ties
• China has promised to strengthen its partnership with Pakistan and build `a new era of China-Pakistan destiny` after Prime Minister Imran Khan apprised President Xi Jinping of the country`s `very difficult` economic situation amid a burgeoning financial crisis.
• Meeting Mr Xi in Beijing`s Great Hall of the People on November 2, 2018, PM Khan said he had come to `learn` from China`s experiences in combating poverty and corruption. `My party has only been in power for two months.
• Officials say the recently announced $6 bailout package from Saudi Arabia is not enough as Pakistan still have to approach International Monetary Fund to avert a balance of payments crisis.
• This will be 13th rescue package Pakistan plans to receive from the lender since the late 1980s.
3. Navy destroyers exhibit firepower
• Pakistan Navy (PN) destroyers demonstrated their firepower (missile firing skills) in the North Arabian Sea during the culmination of the sea phase of Seaspark-18 exercise on November 2, 2018.
• The firing was conducted from the newly-commissioned combat logistic support ship PNS Moawin to validate war fighting concepts under hybrid threat environment involving support of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and the Pakistan Army.
• Anti-ship missiles too were successfully fired by Pakistan Navy ships Shamsheer and Shahjahan. Both missiles hit their targets affirming the PN`s war fighting capability.
4. Islamabad gets new police chief after Swati debacle
• Additional Inspector General (AIG) of Police Mohammad Aamir Zulfiqar Khan has been appointed as police chief of the capital. He succeeds Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Police Jan Mohammad a grade-20 officer.
• According to the notification issued by the establishment division, Mr Khan, a grade-21 officer, was posted as an officer on special duty before the appointment was made.
• Mr Khan takes over from his predecessor Jan Mohammad, who voluntarily relinquished charge on November 2, 2018.
• A week ago, Mr Jan was removed from the post over a complaint by Federal Minister of Sciences and Technology Mohammad Azam Khan Swati.
5. 4pc children get `minimally acceptable diet` in Pakistan: UN
• Four agencies of the United Nations on November 2, 2018 warned of a colossal human loss to Asia and the Pacific and their economies if the countries concerned do not recommit themselves to ending all forms of malnutrition and achieving zero hunger by 2030.
• The report Asia and the Pacific Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition, published by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), the UN Children`s Fund (UNICEF), World Food Programme (WFP) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) highlights changes that threaten to undermine the Sustainable Development Goal to end all forms of malnutrition by 2030 (SDG 2).
• Nearly half a billion people (486 million) in Asia and Pacific region accounts are undernourished.
• While recently released global figures indicate an overall rise in the prevalence of hunger worldwide, returning to levels from a decade ago, this regional report points out that stagnation in combating hunger and malnutrition in Asia and the Pacific is also a major concern due to the large numbers of people involved.
• South Asia continued to witness some progress in reducing the number of undernourished people, although clearly not sufficient to achieve the zero hunger by 2030. In South Asia, the number of undernourished people declined by less than a million between 2016 and 2017.
November 3, 2018: International Current Affairs
6. Sri Lanka court orders arrest of military chief
• A Sri Lankan court on November 2, 2018 ordered the arrest the country`s top military officer over the abduction and murder of 11 people during the Tamil civil war.
• Colombo Fort magistrate Ranga Dissanayake reprimanded police investigators for failing to act on a previous order to detain Admiral Ravindra Wijegunaratne.
• `The court ordered that the admiral be arrested before November 9,` a court official said. `If they fail, there should be action against the police officer handling the case.` The order came amid a bitter power struggle between sacked prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and former president Mahinda Rajapakse, who was named to replace him.
• Rajapakse was head of state from 2005 to 2015 when the decades-old Tamil separatist war was brutally crushed although the timing of today`s ruling appeared to have no deliberate link with the current politic al crisis.
7. Japan cabinet approves bill to accept foreign workers
• Japan`s cabinet on November 2, 2018 approved a draft bill to bring more blue-collar foreign workers into the country, in a controversial move to address chronic labour shortages.
• The draft legislation, now likely to be submitted to parliament as soon as November 2, 2018, has come under attack from both the opposition and members of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe`s own party, but business leaders say it is desperately needed.
• The bill would allow foreign nationals with skills in sectors facing particularly severe shortages to obtain five-year visas, which would not allow them to bring their families.
• Foreign workers in those fields who hold stronger qualifications and pass a more difficult Japanese language test will be able to obtain a visa that can be extended indefinitely, eventually leading to residency, and will be able to bring over family.
8. UN chief warns of famine in Yemen
• UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres warned on November 2, 2018 that Yemen could face `the worst famine we have seen in decades` and urged the country`s warring parties to immediately halt the violence.
• The UN chief told reporters `the urgency of the humanitarian crisis leaves no room for complacency` and the `building wave of momentum` for peace must be seized.
• UN humanitarian chief Mark Lowcock warned last week that `there is a clear and present danger of an imminent and great big famine engulfing Yemen` that could affect 14 million people half of the country`s population.
• The conflict began in 2014 when Houthi rebels toppled the internationally recognised government. A Saudiled coalition allied with the government has been fighting the Houthis since 2015.
9. Russia invites Afghan leaders for talks with Taliban, angering Kabul
• Russia has quietly invited a group of senior Afghan politicians to talks with the Taliban in Moscow, bypassing President Ashraf Ghani`s government in a move that has angered officials in Kabul who say it could muddle the US-backed peace process.
• The invitations, extended over the past two months by Russian diplomats in Kabul, were confirmed by six of the eight leaders, including former president Hamid Karzai, or their aides, and by other leading politicians with ties to the Afghan government.
• Russia in August proposed holding multilateral peace talks in Moscow and invited 12 countries and the Taliban to attend a summit the following month. But the meeting was postponed after Ghani rejected the invitation on the grounds that talks with the Taliban should be led by the Afghan government. The United States had also declined to attend.
• Three senior Afghan officials said the government was unhappy that Moscow was pressing ahead with plans for talks.
November 3, 2018: Sports Current Affairs
10. Pakistan beat NZ, clinch 11th successive series win
• Pakistan lived up to their billing as the world`s best Twenty20 team with a six-wicket victory over New Zealand in Dubai on November 2, 2018 to clinch the three-match series 2-0.
• Mohammad Hafeez (34 not out) and Shoaib Malik (10) added 34 quick runs to help Pakistan overhaul the 154-run target in 19.4 overs at Dubai stadium, pocketing their 11th consecutive series and eighth successive T20 match.
• New Zealand were lifted to 153-7 by Corey Anderson and Colin Munro, who made 44 each after Kane Williamson won the toss and opted to bat.
• Since Sarfraz Ahmed took over as captain in Sept 2016, Pakistan have beaten England (1-0), West Indies (3-0 and 3-1), a World XI (2-1), Sri Lanka (3-0), New Zealand (2-1), West Indies (3-0), Scotland (2-0) and Australia (3-0).