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December 2019

Day by Day Current Affairs (December 21 2019) MCQs for CSS, PMS

Day by Day Current Affairs (December 21 2019) MCQs for CSS, PMS
Written by Shahzad F. Malik

December 21, 2019: National Current Affairs

1. US resuming military training for Pakistan to improve ties

• The Trump administration has approved the resumption of military training facilities for Pakistan to `improve bilateral cooperation on shared priorities`, a spokesperson for the US State Department told.
• The State Department administers the Military Education and Training (IMET) programme, which enables Pakistan and other countries to send their officers to US institutions.
• The department`s spokesperson pointed out that President Donald Trump`s security assistance suspension announced in January 2018 authorised `narrow exceptions for programmes that support vital US national security interests`, making room to restart some programmes. `The administration has approved the resumption of IMET programme for Pakistan as one such exception, subject to Congressional approval,` he added.
• The official said the IMET served `as an effective means to strengthen long-term military-to-military relationships critical to US national security goals`.

2. Pakistan asked to improve ranking on WEF gender parity report

• World Bank Country Director for Pakistan Illango Patchamuthu says Pakistan, despite making progress a great deal on gender parity, is required to improve its ranking by 20 points on the Global Gender Gap Report of the World Economic Forum (WEF) by the next year.
• He was speaking at a consultative session on world Bank`s `Girls Learn, Women Earn` initiative organised by Uzma Kardar, chairperson of the Punjab Assembly`s Standing Committee on Gender Mainstreaming, here at the provincial assembly.
• Terming women economic empowerment and girl education of utmost importance, Mr Patchamuthu said there was a need to take some triggered actions that could accelerate progress in the prioritized areas.

3. MoU signed to improve anti-harassment cells in Balochistan

• The government of Balochistan on December 20, 2019 decided to improve its anti-harassment cells and inquiry mechanism with support of the UN Women (UNW) Pakistan to effectively fight harassment of women at workplaces.
• The UNW signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the office of the ombudsperson Balochistan to work together to improve data collection mechanism and strengthen systems for better data collection, reporting of complaints and assessing trends through reported cases.
• The MoU was signed here by Aisha Mukhtar, deputy country representative UNW, and Sabira Islam, the ombudsperson for protection against harassment Balochistan.
• The signatories have agreed to enhance mechanisms for responding to cases of harassment through development of training materials and training of trainers

4. WhatsApp told to share details of targeted users of Israeli hacking

• In light of fresh claims of Pakistani officials being targeted with a hacking software involving an Israeli spyware company, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has sought details of the compromised users from the social media company.
• In a report published on December 19, 2019, The Guardian claimed that the mobile phones of at least two dozen Pakistani government officials were allegedly targeted earlier this year with technology owned by the Israeli spyware company NSO Group.
• According to the report, scores of Pakistani senior defence and intelligence officials were among those who could have been compromised.
• The PTA said it had asked WhatsApp to provide details of the remedial measures taken to prevent the occurrence of such hacking attempts in future

5. Riyadh forced Islamabad to skip Malaysia moot: Erdogan

• Pakistan on December 20, 2019 cited reasons for keeping itself away from the Kuala Lumpur Summit after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan`s allegation that Islamabad skipped the moot because of pressure from Saudi Arabia.
• `Pakistan did not participate in the KL summit as time and efforts were needed to address the concerns of major Muslim countries regarding possible division in the Ummah,` said FO spokesperson Aisha Farooqui in a statement.
• Pakistan would continue to work for the unity and solidarity of the Ummah, which was indispensable for effectively addressing the challenges faced by the Muslim world, she said.
• While confirming that the government had decided against attending the summit, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had also said on Tuesday the decision had been taken in order to assert neutrality as Riyadh and Abu Dhabi had expressed con-cerns the move could cause a division among the Muslim countries and lead to the setting up of an entity parallel to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation

6. ICC to probe `war crimes` in Palestinian territories

• The International Criminal Court`s chief prosecutor said on Friday she wanted to open a full investigation into alleged war crimes in the Palestinian territories, sparking a furious reaction from Israel.
• Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the decision made the Hague-based court, which Israel has refused to sign up to since its creation in 2002, a `political tool` against the Jewish state.
• The Palestinians welcomed the move by the ICC as a `long overdue step` following a nearly five-year preliminary probe by the prosecutor into the situation since the 2014 war in Gaza.
• `I am satisfied that there is a reasonable basis to proceed with an investigation into the situation in Palestine,` ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said in a statement.

7. China loyalist takes helm in Macau amid trouble in Hong Kong

• Beijing loyalist Ho Iat Seng was inaugurated on December 20, 2019 as China`s chief executive in the tiny gambling enclave of Macau, which unlike neighboring Hong Kong has remained free of pro-democracy protests.
• The 62-year-old businessman read his oath of office in front of Chinese leader Xi Jinping at a ceremony on Friday morning.
• Both men delivered speeches stressing the importance of `the one country, two systems` framework under which the former Portuguese colony has been ruled since its hand over to Chinain1999.
• Unlike in Hong Kong, where months of anti-government protests have wracked the former British colony, Macau has remained overwhelmingly calm, a reflection of its close ties to and economic dependence on mainland China.

8. Johnson wins parliamentary approval for BREXIT deal

• Prime Minister Boris Johnson won approval for his BREXIT deal in parliament on December 20, 2019, the first step toward fulfilling his election pledge to deliver Britain`s departure from the European Union by Jan 31 after his landslide victory.
• Lawmakers voted by 358 to 234 to pass the second reading of the legislation, underlining Johnson`s large majority in parliament that should ensure a smooth ratification of the divorce deal to implement Britain`s biggest policy shift in more than 40 years.
• More than three years since Britain voted to exit the EU in a 2016 referendum, the deep uncertainty over BREXIT has now been replaced by a firm deadline of the end of January. Only after that will the prime minister face talks to secure a trade deal with the bloc and another target date of the end of next year.

9. Timer error thwarts Boeing`s test capsule mission to space station

• A timer error prevented Boeing Co`s new astronaut capsule from reaching the desired orbit as it embarked on an unmanned debut journey to the International Space Station on December 20, 2019, US space agency Nasa said.
• The CST-100 Starliner astronaut capsule successfully launched earlier from Cape Canaveral in Florida, but then failed to reach the orbit that would have put it on track to meet up with the space station.
• The mission was a milestone test for the US aerospace firm, which is vying with SpaceX to revive NASA`s human spaceflight capabilities

10. English women`s team beat Pakistan to win T20 series 3-0

• England women cricketers beat Pakistan women`s team by 26 runs in the third and final T20I to complete a 3-0 series whitewash at Kuala Lumpurs`s Kinrara Oval on December 20, 2019.
• After winning the toss and electing to bat, England captain Heather Knight scored a quick fire 31-ball 43 which helped her side post an impressive 170 for three, said the message made available here by the Pakistan Cricket Board.
• Knight`s 81-run partnership for the second-wicket with Amy Jones (37 off 35) was instrumental in giving England a firm grip of the innings after opener Danni Wyatt who hit two fours and two sixes in her 15-ball 25 was dismissed by Umaima Sohail, who returned one for 18 in three overs.
• Pakistan in reply managed 144 for five in 20 overs. Leg spinner Sarah Glenn and medium-pacer Anya Shurbsole picked up two wickets each for 12 and 15 runs.

Day by Day Current Affairs (December 21 2019) MCQs for CSS, PMS

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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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