December 2020

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs / News (December 19, 2020) for CSS, PMS

Daily Top-10 Current Affairs MCQs / News (December 19, 2020) for CSS, PMS
Written by Shahzad F. Malik
WELCOME TO CSS TIMES DAY BY  DAY CURRENT AFFAIRS, YOUR BEST SOURCE FOR UP-TO-DATE AND DAILY TOP CURRENT AFFAIRS 2020 FOR PREPARATION OF CSS, PMS, BANKING, NTS, RAILWAYS AND ALL COMPETITIVE EXAMS.  “DAY TO DAY CURRENT AFFAIRS” BASICALLY IS TOP 10 NEWS SUMMARY ON CURRENT HAPPENINGS OF NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL IMPORTANCE FOR ALL EXAMINATIONS

December 19, 2020: National / International Current Affairs


1. Observers from UN escape `targeted` Indian attack

• In yet another brazen act of ceasefire violation, Indian army on December 18, 2020 morning `deliberately` fired upon a United Nations (UN) vehicle carrying two military observers on a routine monitoring mission along the restive Line of Control (LoC)in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), officials said.
• Fortunately, they added, no member of the observers group was hurt but the white vehicle hoisting the blue UN flag was damaged in the `targeted` attack.


2. By-election in Umerkot on Jan 18 a year after seat fell vacant

• As the year 2020 heads to a close without any by-poll for a national or provincial assembly seat taking place, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on December 18, 2020 announced schedule for the first by-election of 2021.
• Under the schedule issued a day after the ECP`s decision to immediately hold all pending by-elections across the country, by election for the Sindh Assembly`s seat from PS-52 Umerkot will take place on Jan 18 a year after the seat fell vacant.


3. PM launches health insurance scheme for Azad Kashmir

• Prime Minister Imran Khan on December 18, 2020 launched the health card facility for 1.2 million families in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).
• `By launching this facility we want people on the other side of Kashmir to know how we treat our people,` the prime minister said while addressing a ceremony held to launch the Sehat Sahulat Programme`s Universal Health Coverage for Azad Kashmir


4. Sindh first province to make phase-wise Covid-19 vaccination plan

• The Sindh government on December 18, 2020 communicated a detailed plan for the upcoming Covid-19 vaccination drive under which first priority would be given to front-line health workers then senior citizens and people with underlying conditions before turning to the general public.
• An official said that Sindh had become the first province in the country that designed such a strategy to meet the challenge


5. Biden picks Pakistani-born expert as his climate aide

• A Pakistani born climate expert has been chosen by US president-elect Joe Biden as his Deputy National Climate Adviser.
• Ali Zaidi, 33, is a leading climate expert and a longtime adviser to Mr Biden.
• Mr Biden has announced appointments of key members of his climate team, which includes Mr Zaidi who is currently New York`s deputy secretary for energy and environment and will now serve as deputy White House climate coordinator


6. US blacklists Chinese companies including chip giant SMIC

• The United States on December 18, 2020 announced it has imposed export controls on 77 Chinese companies including the country`s biggest chipmaker, SMIC, restricting its access to US technology over its alleged ties to China`s military.
• The announcement in the final weeks of President Donald Trump`s term comes after relations between Washington and Beijing soured under his administration, which saw the US start a trade war with China and expand its list of sanctioned entities to a few hundred Chinese companies and subsidiaries.


7. Biden nominates Native American woman for cabinet post

• US President-elect Joe Biden unveiled his environment team on December 18, 2020, choosing congresswoman Deb Haaland to serve as the first Native American interior secretary and Jennifer Granholm, a former Michigan governor, as energy secretary.
• He also nominated Michael Regan, a North Carolina environmental regulator who is Black and brokered the nation`s largest coal ash cleanup, to be administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency


8. Iran starts construction at underground nuclear facility

• Iran has begun construction on a site at its underground nuclear facility at Fordo amid tensions with the US over its atomic programme, according to satellite photos obtained by this news agency on December 18, 2020.
• Iran has not publicly acknowledged any new construction at Fordo, whose discovery by the West in 2009 came in an earlier round of brinkmanship before world powers struck the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran


9. Poor countries to start getting Covid-19 vaccines early next year: WHO

• The World Health Organisation and partners said on December 18, 2020 that the Covax facility, created to ensure equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines worldwide, expected to begin delivering jabs early next year.
• The UN health agency, the Gavi vaccine alliance, and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) announced they had now secured nearly two billion doses of various vaccine candidates still under development on behalf of the 190 countries taking part in Covax


10. Jupiter, Saturn merging in night sky, closest in centuries

• Jupiter and Saturn will merge in the night sky on Monday, appearing closer to one another than they have since Galileos time in the 17th century.
• Astronomers say so-called conjunctions between the two largest planets in our solar system aren`t particularly rare. Jupiter passes its neighbor Saturn in their respective laps around the sun every 20 years


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Shahzad F. Malik

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