December 2021

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs / News (December 18, 2021) for CSS, PMS

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs / News (December 18, 2021) for CSS, PMS
Written by Shahzad F. Malik

December 18, 2021: National / International Current Affairs

1. FM urges world to revisit policy of shunning Taliban

• Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on December 17, 2021 warned of catastrophic consequences if the world failed to assist the struggling Afghans and called upon the international community to revisit the policy of not engaging with the Taliban regime.
• Mr Qureshi was talking to journalists at the Foreign Office ahead of the 17th extraordinary session of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation`s (OIC) Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) that begins in Islamabad on Saturday with the senior officials` meeting. The foreign ministers would meet on Sunday.
• A delegation of the Taliban government led by its foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi will also attend the meeting

2. ECC okays Rs106bn food subsidy to help 20m families

• The Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet approved an amount of Rs106.1 billion on Friday to subsidise three essential food items flour, pulses and cooking oil or ghee.
• The subsidy to be available for six months from Jan 1 to June 30 at registered grocery shops is likely to benefit at least 20 million families.
• At a meeting chaired by Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Omar Ayub Khan, the committee approved the Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety (PASS) division`s Ehsaas Rashan Riayat (ration concession) subsidy programme.

3. Winter vacation in schools, colleges from Jan 3: NCOC

• The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on December 17, 2021 decided to observe winter holidays in educational institutions from Jan 3, 2022, with Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa releasing their own schedules.
• The forum said the decision had been taken to ensure maximum number of students received their Covid-19 vaccines, which was only possible when schools and colleges remained open.
• However, the decision will not be applicable on institutions in areas affected by extreme weather conditions or fog.
• Soon after the NCOC meeting, the Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) issued a notification announcing that all schools and colleges within its jurisdiction would remain closed from Jan 3 till the 9th

4. PIA acquires A320 flight simulator

• The Pakistan International Airline (PIA) has acquired Airbus A320 flight simulator that will be used for training of more than 400 pilots, proficiency checks and will reduce the cost of training of pilots.
• According to sources, a simple ceremony of acquiring the flight simulator was held in Islamabad on Monday which was attended by the United Kingdom`s ambassador in Pakistan, regional director of L3 company and secretary aviation.
• The PIA had signed an agreement with L-3 UK Ltd to provide an A320 flight simulator for pilots` training. Currently the national flag carrier operates 11 Airbus A 320 aircraft, while that number of A320 aircraft is expected to increase to 15 by April 2022.

5. Three new IHC judges sworn in

• The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on December 17, 2021 got three more judges after Chief Justice Athar Minallah administered the oath to the newly appointed additional judges on Friday.
• After taking oath of their offices the judges formally started performing their duties.
• IHC Chief Justice Minallah administered the oath to Justice Sardar Ejaz Ishaq Khan, Justice Arbab Mohammad Tahir and Justice Saman Rafat Imtiaz during a ceremony on the court premises .

6. Textile, clothing exports jump 28pc to $7.8bn in 5MFY22

• Textile and clothing exports grew 28 per cent year-on-year to $7.75 billion in the first five months (July to November) of this fiscal year, mainly on the back of a massive depreciation in the rupee`s value and a steady rise in global demand.
• The year-on-year growth in November was even higher at 35pc, data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics showed on Friday.
• The government has yet to announce the much-awaited textile and apparel policy pending for the last few years. Several drafts have been presented before the Economic Coordination Committee, but the policy has yet to be approved.

7. UN upholds right to self-determination for all, including Kashmiris

• The UN General Assembly (UNGA) adopted with consensus on December 17, 2021 a Pakistan-sponsored resolution which `unequivocally supports the right to self-determination` for all peoples under subjugation, including those of occupied Kashmir.
• `This global affirmation of the right to self-determination will keep alive the flame of freedom in Jammu and Kashmir,` said Pakistan`s UN ambassador, Munir Akram, while talking to Dawn after the resolution`s adoption.
• The resolution titled `Universal Realisation of the Right of the Peoples to Self-Determination` was co-sponsored by 72 countries from all regions and was approved with consensus at an UNGA meeting in New York

8. Iran nuke talks adjourn as pause disappoints Europeans

• Talks aimed at salvaging Iran`s tattered 2015 nuclear deal with world powers adjourned on December 17, 2021 to allow the Iranian negotiator to return home for consultations after a round marked by tensions over new demands from Tehran.
• European diplomats said it was a disappointing pause and that negotiators in Vienna are rapidly `reaching the end of the road`. However, they did point to some technical progress so far.
• Participants said they aim to resume quickly, though they haven`t yet firmed up a date. China`s chief negotiator, Wan Qun, said the talks will resume hopefully before the end of the year. Enrique Mora, the European Union diplomat who chaired the talks, echoed that, saying: `I hope it will be during 2021

9. Taliban prepare Afghanistan budget free of foreign aid

• Afghanistan`s finance ministry under the Taliban government has prepared a draft national budget that, for the first time in two decades, is funded without foreign aid, a spokesman said.
• It comes as the country is mired in economic crisis and faces a looming humanitarian catastrophe that the United Nations has called an `avalanche of hunger`.
• Finance ministry spokesman Ahmad Wali did not disclose the size of the draft budget which runs until December 2022 but said it would go to the cabinet for approval before being published.
• `We are trying to finance it from our domestic revenues and we believe we can,` he told state television in an interview shared on Twitter.

10. US Senate approves setting up Afghan war commission

• The US Senate approved a defence bill on December 17, 2021, which calls for establishing an independent commission to scrutinise the Afghan war and to probe options for combating terrorism in the region, including Pakistan.
• The proposed 16-member Afghanistan War Commission will produce a report within three years. The members would be selected in equal measure by Republican and Democratic lawmakers. Current and former members of Congress dating to 2001, as well as Cabinet-level and high-ranking defence officials involved in planning US policies on Afghanistan are excluded.
• A previous version of the bill also proposed probing Pakistan`s role in the Afghan war, but that provision has now been dropped

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    Shahzad F. Malik

    Shahzad Faisal Malik is the administrator of and is responsible for managing the content, design, and overall direction of the blog. He has a strong background in Competitive Exams and is passionate and sharing information with others.
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