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September 25, 2018: National Current Affairs
1. CCI agrees to resolve Sindh, Balochistan water crisis
- In the first meeting of the reconstituted Council of Common Interests (CCI) on September 24, 2018, the Centre decided to resolve the water crisis in Sindh (with special emphasis on Karachi) and Balochistan, besides ensuring better education facilities across the country.
- The CCI agreed to overcome the water scarcity in Karachi city and referred an application of the Sindh government regarding provision of 650MGD additional water for the country`s commercial hub to the National Water Council (NWC).
- The NWC will make its recommendations keeping in view the present water supply situation in the country and a formula of water distribution among the provinces.
- The NWC will present its report before the CCI and will also advise how water wastage could be prevented and which steps should be taken for better utilisation of water, according to the media cell of the Prime Minister Office.
2. Pakistan, Poland vow to further enhance collaboration
- Pakistan and Poland September 24, 2018 resolved to further enhance mutual collaboration in various fields with particular focus on defence ties.
- This transpired during a meeting between visiting Polish Air Force Brigadier General Jacek Pszczola and Pakistan Air Force Chief Mujahid Anwar Khan here at PAF headquarters. Both the dignitaries also discussed matters of professional interest.
- Chief of Polish Air Force paid homage to the martyrs of PAF by laying floral wreath on Martyrs’ Monument. Chief of Polish Air Force lauded the high morale and sound professionalism of the PAF personnel.
3. Cairo summit stresses Pak-Egypt partnership to reap benefits
- Speakers at an international summit in Cairo, Egypt, on September 24, 2018 stressed the need for creating new partnerships to reap full potential of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the Belt and Road Initiative launched by China in 2013.
- The two-day ‘CPEC-BRI Cairo Dialogue and Trade Summit–Building Partnership for Trade Transformation’ organised by South Asian Strategic Stability Institute was attended by ministers, senior government officials, major commercial entities, leading businessmen, investors, academicians, experts and policymakers from Pakistan and Egypt.
- While addressing the event on the opening day, SASSI President Dr Maria Sultan said that Egypt was not only the gateway to Africa but was also set to become the gateway to emerging corridors of international trade. “We are heading towards regional connectivity and building partnerships which will help our people benefit from this great economic transformation,” she said, adding that they had proposed a north-south corridor that is going to build up on the frameworks already in place through CPEC and the BRI.
4. Facebook selects 2 Pakistani women
- Two women from Pakistan who created Facebook groups have been selected for the social networking giant’s first Community Leadership Programme, a private news channel reported Monday.
- Kanwal Ahmed of Soul Sisters Pakistan and Nadia Gangjee of Sheops are among 115 community leaders of 6,000 applicants from around the world selected for the program. The 115 participants will serve as community leaders in residence, fellows, and youth participants. More than 100 fellows and youth participants will be awarded up to $50,000 each for their various community efforts.
- Out of the 115 participants, Facebook granted the role of community leaders in residence to five people who will each receive up to $1,000,000 in funding to build communities. The company said it will decide on the final amount based on a budget proposal from the residents themselves. In February, Facebook had announced the initiative meant to provide funding to individuals building communities on the platform.
5. PM appoints Raja Jalal as new GB governor
- Prime Minister Imran Khan on September 24, 2018 approved a summary for the appointment of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Gilgit Baltistan (GB) President Raja Jalal as the new governor.
- The summary has been forwarded to President Dr Arif Alvi for an approval and the notification in this regard will be issued subsequently.
- Raja Jalal will be the sixth GB governor after Mir Ghazanfar Ali Khan, who resigned earlier this month.
September 25, 2018: International Current Affairs
6. India test-fires interceptor missile
- India successfully test-fired an interceptor missile off the coast in its eastern state of Odisha on September 24, 2018.
- The missile test was carried out September 24, 2018 night from Abdul Kalam Island of the integrated test range (ITR).
- The Prithvi Defence Vehicle (PDV) mission is for engaging the targets in the exo-atmosphere region at an altitude above 50 km of the earth’s atmosphere.
7. Trump`s tariffs on $200bn of Chinese imports kick in
- President Donald Trump`s tariffs on another $200 billion of Chinese imports took effect September 24, 2018, with Beijing accusing Washington of `economic intimidation` as the standoff between the world`s top two economies clouds the global outlook.
- The latest volley against Beijing brings the amount of goods hit by duties to more than $250bn, roughly half of China`s US exports, with American consumers set to increasingly feel the pain.
- Trump has hit 12 per cent of total US imports this year alone.
- Defiant in the face of increasing fears about the impact to the US economy, Trump has threatened to hit all imports from China if it refuses to change policies he says harm US industry, particularly the theft of American technology.
8. EU takes Poland to court over judicial independence
- The European Union referred Poland to its top court on September 24, 2018, in the latest legal confrontation between Brussels and populist member governments.
- EU leaders say they had to move quickly to halt an alleged legal threat to the independence of Poland’s judiciary from its own rightwing government.
- But the decision will also stir mounting tensions between the central EU leadership and nationalist politicians from eastern and southern member states.
- Brussels took action amid fears Poland and other EU members with populist and authoritarian tendencies are undermining the union’s founding values.
- The European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm, targeted Poland’s decision to lower the age at which Supreme Court judges must retire from 70 to 65.
9. Russia to supply S-300 missile defence systems to Syria
- Russia announced on September 24, 2018 that it will supply the Syrian government with more modern, S-300 missile defence systems following last week`s downing of a Russian plane by Syria, a friendly fire incident that sent regional tensions over the war-torn country soaring.
- The Russian military aircraft was downed by Syrian government missile defence systems, killing all 15 people on board. Russia laid the blame squarely on Israel, saying Israeli fighter jets had pushed the Russian plane into the line of Syria`s fire.
- Shortly before the downing, Israeli strikes had hit targets inside Syria, reportedly preventing an arms shipment going to the Iranian-backed militant Hezbollah group.
- Russia launched its campaign in Syria to support President Bashar Assad in 2015, and though the involvement turned the tide of war in favour of Syrian government forces, Moscow has since tried to play a careful balancing act, maintaining good ties both with Iran and Israel.
September 25, 2018: Sports Current Affairs
10. Modric, Marta crowned the best in London
- In a glittering ceremony that saw a host of footballing stars descend on London’s Royal Festival Hall, home to London’s Symphony Orchestra, the beautiful game’s chief conductors were coronated at ‘The Best FIFA Football Awards’ in the United Kingdom’s capital.
- Luka Modric and Didier Deschamps were awarded the leading honours for The Best FIFA Men’s Player and Men’s Coach respectively in a ceremony on London’s Royal Festival Hall, after their outstanding years and notable contributions at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
- Legendary Brazilian forward Marta and first-time nominee Reynald Pedros were rewarded as The Best FIFA Women’s Player and Women’s coach respectively.
- After Gianluigi Buffon picked up the inaugural The Best FIFA Goalkeeper Award at last year’s ceremony, Thibaut Courtois was crowned his replacement after the now Real Madrid man’s outstanding year with Chelsea and stunning performances at Russia 2018.