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March 26, 2022: National / International Current Affairs
1. Lawmaker is not bound to declare loyalty to party: CJP
• Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial observed on March 27, 2022 that the Constitution did not bind a lawmaker to declare allegiance to a political party.
• While referring to an argument by Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) Khalid Jawed Khan in which he had tried to equate defection under Article 63A of the Constitution in the presidential reference with that of `Khayanat` (dishonesty), the CJP observed that Khayanat was a serious offence and the holy Quran speaks of serious punishment for it.
• But the question demanding attention is: whether the Constitution speaks of dishonesty to a political party or to the constituents who elect legislators.
• The AGP will have a good case if he established that those who switched their loyalty had betrayed their voters, the CJP observed
2. CERN team reviewing Pakistan`s associate membership
• A task force of the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) is reviewing to extend the associate membership of Pakistan for another Eve years, a press release of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) said on March 25, 2022.
• The task force comprising five experts is holding meetings with different entities in Pakistan to review the associate membership.
• Pakistan`s five-year associate membership completed in July 2020. The CERN council designated a task force and decided to carry out a virtual review of the country`s membership from March 7 to 18 this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
• However, one of the meetings was postponed due to the extraordinary call session of the CERN council on Russian-Ukraine confiict, the PAEC said. The postponed session will now be held on April 19.Virtual meetings of CERN task force members with Pakistani delegates were held at length at PAEC headquarters. PAEC Chairman Muhammad Naeem welcomed all CERN task force members for virtual meetings with different entities in Pakistan and elaborated millstones of the collaboration
3. EAA, ADB plan to educate 960,000 poor children in Pakistan
• Global education foundation Education Above All (EAA) has partnered with the Asian Development Bank to enroll 960,000 out-of-school children in the country into primary education over the next four years.
• The EAA project, with financial contributions from Qatar Fund for Development and implementation by the ADB, is testament to the foundation`s commitment to educate every child through strategic partnerships.
• The EAA`s track record shows that the most effective way to eliminate barriers to education is to work cooperatively across sectors, the foundation said in a press release issued on Friday.
• The EAA is a global foundation established in 2012 by Sheikha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar
4. War drives US-EU energy deal to undercut Russia
• With stunning speed, Russia`s war in Ukraine is driving Western Europe in to the outstretched arms of the United States again, especially apparent when President Joe Biden offered a major expansion of natural gas shipments to his European Union counterpart Friday.
• Talking to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Biden said the core issue was helping Europe reduce its dependency on Russian gas as quickly as possible.
• And Europe, which relies on Moscow for 40 per cent of the natural gas used to heat homes, generate electricity and drive industry, needs the help.
5. With military support high on agenda, Biden lands in Poland
• US President Joe Biden landed in Poland, on March 25, 2022 to get a firsthand look at international efforts to help some of the millions of Ukrainian refugees fleeing war in their country, and speak to American troops bolstering Nato`s eastern flank.
• His first stop was to meet soldiers from the US Army`s 82nd Airborne Division stationed in the area of Rzeszow airport as part of Nato`s protection of the alliance`s eastern flank.
• TV footage showed him sharing pizza and chatting with several military personnel.
• Biden`s schedule was delayed after the plane carrying Polish President Andrzej Duda was turned back on route to Rzeszow and made an emergency landing in Warsaw. Duda later boarded a different aircraft and headed back to eastern Poland. An official in his office said Duda had not been in any danger