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February 2019

Day by Day Current Affairs (February 15, 2019) | MCQs for CSS, PMS

Current Affairs MCQs 2019 Daily Updates
Written by Shahzad F. Malik

February 15, 2019: National Current Affairs

1. ICJ to take up Indian spy Jadhav`s case on 18th

• As the International Court of Justice (ICJ) formally commences public hearing on the conviction of Indian spy commander Kulbhushan Jadhav from Feb 18, Pakistan`s delegation for oral arguments will depart for The Hague on February 15, 2019 (today).
• Attorney General Anwar Mansoor would lead thePakistani delegation whereas Director General South Asia Dr Mohammad Faisal would lead the Foreign Office side.
• The world court has set a timetable for public hearings from Feb 18 to 21 in The Hague and Harish Salve, who represents New Delhi, is expected to argue first on Feb 18. Then English Queen`s Counsel Khawar Qureshi will make submissions on Feb 19 from Islamabad`s side.
• Then India will reply on Feb 20 while Islamabad will make its closing submissions on Feb 21. It is expected that the ICJ decision may be delivered by the summer of 2019.`We are fully prepared with our strongest evidence being the valid Indian passport recovered from Commander Jadhav with a Muslim name, said the official, adding that Pakistan was committed to implementing the decision, irrespective of what decision came from the ICJ.
• Commander Jadhav was captured in Balochistan in March 2016 and later confessed to his association with Indian intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and his involvement in espionage and fomenting terrorism in Pakistan.

2. China geological survey ship concludes Pak visit

• China Geological Survey Research Ship (CGS) “HAI YANG DI ZHI SHI HAO” has concluded visit of Pakistan for Hydrocarbon research and geological mapping under the auspices of Pakistan Navy.
• The CGS Research Ship undertook this expedition from Dec 18 to Feb 19.
• Pakistan Navy hosted the CGS research ship “HAI YANG DI ZHI SHI HAO” at Karachi port.
• The visit of research ship was materialised after the meeting of Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi with Vice Minister China Geological Survey (CGS) Dr Zhong Ziran, in Beijing last year.
• During the expedition, CGS ship conducted various Seismic and Oceanographic observations in the offshore area of Pakistan.
• Along with Chinese scientists, scientists from National Institute of Oceanography and Pakistan Navy also participated in the expedition. The acquired data will be jointly processed by Pakistani and Chinese scientists.

3. Adnan Ghani appointed ZTBL president

• The federal cabinet has appointed Adnan Ghani as new president/CEO of Zarai Tarqiati Bank Limited (ZTBL).
• The federal cabinet, which met under the chair of Prime Minister Imran Khan, considered three names for the slot of president ZTBL. The three candidates were Adnan Ghani, Shahbaz Jameel and incumbent acting president/CEO, Sheikh Aman Ullah. Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain informed the media that government has decided to appoint Adnan Ghani as president ZTBL.
• The post of president ZTBL was vacated since September 2018. The PTI government had removed the heads of different banks, including the ZTBL. The government had removed SME Bank President Ihsanul Haq Khan, First Women Bank President Tahira Raza, Zarai Tarakiati Bank Limited (ZTBL) President Syed Talat Mahmood and House Building Finance Corporation (HBFC) Managing Director Syed Basit Aly.

4. DG Oil removed from post

• The government has removed Director General Oil, Policy Wing Petroleum Division from his position and appointed another official of the ministry to head the Directorate General oil. Director General of Directorate General Oil Abdul Jabbar Memon was replaced with former DG Special Projects Petroleum Division.
• Abdul Jabbar Memon was an expert in oil sector and was given the charge of DG oil after then Director General Oil Azam Khan was removed in 2015 because of the oil crisis hit the country. The source said that Abdul Jabbar was posted as Director General Special Projects, said the source.
• Malik Amjad was early working as Director General Special Projects and attained the age of superannuation last month. However, Prime Minister Imran Khan approved one year extension in his service. The Ministry of Energy (Petroleum Division) has proposed two years extension in the service of Director General Special Projects Malik Amjad.

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5. Justice (r) Aftab Farrukh laid to rest

• Justice (Retired) Aftab Farrukh was laid to rest on February 14, 2019.
• Justice Farrukh had joined the Pakistan Movement at a very young age. He was a man of high caliber. He had refused to take oath under the provisional constitutional order (PCO). He received Roll of Honour in sports at the Government College University at a very young age. He passed his law examination in 1952 and started practicing law. He became a judge later and refused to take oath under the PCO under military ruler General Ziaul Haq in 1981.

February 15, 2019: International Current Affairs

6. 44 Indian security personnel killed in held Kashmir attack

• Over 40 personnel of India`s paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) were killed in a fedayeen-style strike in India-held Jammu and Kashmir on February 14, 2019.
• Reuters said 44 men were killed as a jeep with 350kg of explosives rammed a bus in a large security convoy at Pulwama in the disputed Himalayan region.
• Indian reports claimed that Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) group had claimed responsibility for the attack, the worst in decades.
• NDTV said 40 men were injured. Calling the attack `despicable and dastardly`, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said: `The sacrifices of our brave security personnel shall not go in vain.
• He tweeted: `The entire nation stands shoulder to shoulder with the families of the brave martyrs.
• The attack significantly comes ahead of the visit to Pakistan and India of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, apparently putting the focus on an issue that the visitor might have been keen to avoid discussing openly.

7. South Asia has more troops than other regions: report

• Between 2006 and 2016, armed forces personnel as a share of the labour force trended downward in every region except South Asia, says a US State Department report released on February 14, 2018.
• In 2006, South Asia had about 2.62 million personnel in the armed forces, which was 0.18 per cent of its total population and 0.43pc of its labour force.
• In 2016, the total strength of armed forces in South Asia increased to 3.01 million, remaining at 0.18pc of the region`s population but increased slightly to 0.44pc of South Asia`s labour force.
• The world`s annual value military expenditures, however, registered an increase of 19 to 38pc during this period, from about $1.74-$2.03 trillion in 2006 to about $1.73$2.82 trillion in 2016, the report shows.
• Thus, the global average of military expenditure for this 11-year period was between $1.67 and $2.48 trillion.
• In South Asia, the lowest mean for the 11-year period was $53,100 million while the highest was $198,000 million. In 2016, South Asia spent up to $264,000 million on defence, including military personnel, services and hardware, which was up to 2.5pc of the region`s GDP.
• South Asia`s lowest GDP to military expenditure percentage for the 2006-2016 period was 1.1pc and the highest was 2.5pc.

8. Pentagon chief assures NATO no unilateral pullout from Afghanistan

• Washington will not unilaterally withdraw from Afghanistan, the Pentagon chief said on February 14, 2019, as NATO said the Kabul government must be brought into US peace talks with the Taliban to end the country`s 17-year war.
• Acting defence secretary Patrick Shanahan said any decision to reduce the number of US troops in Afghanistan would be taken in coordination with NATO, which runs a training and support mission in the war-torn country.
• The United States is leading a push for peace talks with the Taliban, seeking a breakthrough in the grinding conflict, with them announcing on Wednesday a fresh round of meetings in Islamabad.
• But NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned against anymore delay in involving the Afghan government of President Ashraf Ghani in the process, saying that without it lasting peace would not be possible.

9. Top UN court rejects US claim to throw out Iranian suit

• The International Court of Justice (ICJ) has ruled that it has the jurisdiction to hear part of a case brought by Iran against the United States, aimed at unfreezing close to $2 billion in Iranian assets being held there.
• The Hague-based court’s ruling opens the way for the court to now hear Iran’s case on its merits, which news reports suggest, given the complexity of the case, could take several years. Iran filed the case in 2016, based on the 1955 Treaty of Amity between the two nations, from which the US later unilaterally withdrew, in 2018.
• The case revolved around assets seized from the Iranian national bank, Bank Markazi, which were taken by the US to compensate victims of a 1983 suicide bombing of a Marine Corps base in Beirut, Lebanon, which the US blames on Tehran. Iran denies involvement in the attack which killed more than 300, injuring many more, most of whom were US military personnel.
• The US has argued that Iran’s claims to retrieving its assets based on the Treaty of Amity, were now void, following the US decision to withdraw.
• In an 11-4 majority ruling on Wednesday, the ICJ upheld one of five US objections, in this instance to the court’s jurisdiction, based on Iran’s assertion of State immunity, but the judges unanimously rejected the US argument that measures freezing Iranian assets fell outside the scope of the treaty.

February 15, 2019: Sports Current Affairs

10. PSL kicks off in Dubai amid glittering musical ceremony

• The Pakistan Super League (PSL) festival of cricket commenced on February 14, 2019 evening in a glittering musical opening ceremony.
• Thirty-four high drama matches will be played in the HBL PSL eight in Pakistan including the March 17 final with Islamabad United as defending champions of the six-team competition. The other five teams are Peshawar Zalmi, Quetta Gladiators, Karachi Kings, Multan Sultans and Lahore Qalandars.
• The Dubai stadium was adorned with huge banners of all six franchises with an iconic stage the focus of a capacity crowd as the ceremony opened with the national anthem of Pakistan.
• Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ehsan Mani welcomed the teams, fans, viewers and all those who are involved in the staging of the yearly carnival of cricket. `It gives me great pleasure to welcome you all to the opening ceremony of the HBL Pakistan Super League,` said Mani. `I wish the teams the best of luck as they start their journey towards winning the title.

Day by Day Current Affairs (February 15, 2019) | MCQs for CSS, PMS

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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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