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July 01, 2019: National Current Affairs
1. Assets declaration deadline extended to July 3
• The government on June 30, 2019 extended the deadline for its Assets Declaration Scheme for three days until the end of office hours on July 3 through a presidential ordinance to help those in queues complete the process and whiten their assets.
• `We are giving last opportunity so that in case some people are still in the process and facing difficulty to let them avail of the benefits,` said Prime Minister`s Adviser on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh at a press conference along with the Minister of State for Revenue, Hammad Azhar, and Federal Board of Revenue chairman Shabbar Zaidi.
• Mr Shaikh said the scheme was currently in the final stage and people had been showing a lot of interest and hence the government had decided to extend the deadline.
2. Britain`s royal couple to visit Pakistan
• Prince William and his wife Kate will visit Pakistan later this year on the first royal trip to the country in more than a decade, Kensington Palace announced on June 30, 2019.
• Pakistan has battled militancy for more than a decade, with tens of thousands of people killed, but the security situation has stabilised recently after crackdowns on militants. The royal couple`s visit, requested by Britain`s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, shows London`s renewed interest in Pakistan.
• Pakistan welcomed the royal visit.
• `Government and the people of Pakistan warmly welcome the announcement of the royal visit, tweeted Pakistan`s envoy to Britain, Nafees Zakaria.
3. Govt notifies 33-member National Youth Council
• Prime Minister Imran Khan has formally approved the launch of 33-member National Youth Council (NYC) for uplift of youth of the country.
• It is a remarkable initiative to ensure active participation of young professionals in national development.
• It would be a devised scheme to economically empower the youth who had deprived of better livelihood and income opportunities.
• Prominent figures from various fields including Education, Sports, Religion, Economy and Arts will part of NYC.
• Ghazi from operation Zarb-e-Azb Major Tanveer Shafi, Cricketer Hassan Ali, Sana Meer, Actor Hamza Ali Abbassi, Mahira Khan, Samina Baig and Muniba Mizari will be part of the programme.
4. Authority under Benami Transactions Act notified
• The federal government has established the Adjudicating Authority under Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act-2017, according to a press statement issued by the Federal Board of Revenue.
• Jamil Ahmed, a retired Pakistan Administrative Officer has been appointed as Chairperson of the Adjudicating Authority whereas Muhammad Tanvir Akhtar, a retired Inland Revenue Officer and Khaqan Murtaza, an officer of Pakistan Administrative Officer were appointed as members Adjudicating Authority, according to the notification. The Adjudicating Authority will start functioning w.e.f. 1st July, 2019.
July 1, 2019: International Current Affairs
5. Lankan Govt faces legal fight in bid to resume hangings
• Sri Lanka`s president is facing fresh legal challenges in his attempt to end a 43-year moratorium on capital punishment and start executing drug convicts.
• Two petitions were filed in the Court of Appeal on Friday seeking an order quashing any move by Maithripala Sirisena to resume executions, which have not been carried out since the last hanging in June 1976.
• On Wednesday, Sirisena said he has completed formalities to resume hangings by signing the death warrants of four condemned drug convicts.
• He did not say when the executions would be carried out.
6. Giant Beijing airport set to open on eve of China`s 70th birthday
• Beijing is set to open an eye-catching multi-billion dollar airport resembling a massive shining starfish, to accommodate soaring air traffic in China and celebrate the Communist government`s 70th anniversary in power.
• Work on the Beijing Daxing International Airport officially ended on schedule June 30, 2019, ready for a September 30 inauguration on the eve of the anniversary of the foundation of the People`s Republic on October 1, 1949 by Mao Zedong.
• Celebrations of that event will see President Xi Jinping reviewing a huge military parade through the centre of Beijing, with the opening of the futuristic hub a fitting embodiment of the `Chinese dream` he has offered his fellow citizens.
• Located 46 kilometres south of Tiananmen square, the new airport will operate at full capacity in 2025,with four runways and the potential to receive 72 million passengers per year.
7. Trump steps into North Korea in historic first, meets Kim
• Donald Trump stepped onto North Korean soil in a historic first on June 30, 2019 as he met Pyongyang`s leader Kim Jong Un in a moment of high diplomatic drama on the world`s last Cold War frontier.
• Moments after becoming the only sitting US president to set foot inside North Korea, Trump brought Kim back over the dividing line for a meeting where they agreed to start working-level t alks on Pyongy ang`s nuclear weapons.
• As they sat down for discussions, the North Korean leader said their `handshake of peace` in a location that was `the symbol of the division of north and south` showed that `we are willing to put the past behind us`.
8. EU, Vietnam sign free trade agreement
• Vietnam and the European Union signed a free trade agreement on June 30, 2019, opening opportunities to further boost trade between the euro bloc and one of Southeast Asia`s biggest manufacturing nations.
• The agreement, which was signed by European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmstrom and Vietnamese Trade Minister Tran Tuan Anh in Hanoi, Vietnam`s capital, will eliminate almost all tariffs for goods traded between Vietnam and the EU`s 28 member countries.
• Once the deal takes effect, the EU will lift 85 per cent of its tariffs on Vietnamese goods, gradually cutting the rest over the following seven years.
July 1, 2019: Sports Current Affairs
9. Bairstow, Woakes put England back on track with India win
• Jonny Bairstow hit a hundred before Chris Woakes starred as England ended India`s unbeaten run at this World Cup with a 31-run win on June 30, 2019 to once again leave semi-final qualification in their own hands.
• England, who came into this match at Edgbaston on the back of successive defeats by Sri Lanka and Australia, will be assured of a place in the last four if they beat New Zealand in their last group match on Wednesday.
• England`s bid to win a first World Cup title is based on aggressive top order batting but the runs had dried up lately.
• That made their 337-7 after captain Eoin Morgan won the toss on a good pitch in Birmingham all the more heartening.
10. Verstappen wins Austrian GP
• Max Verstappen won the Austrian Grand Prix for a second straight year on June 30, 2019 as Red Bull ended Mercedes’ unbeaten streak this season.
• The Dutchman recovered from a poor start to work his way up to the front of the pack from eighth place, and overtook leader Charles Leclerc in a Ferrari with just two laps to go. However, stewards were investigating Verstappen’s move to pass Leclerc as both cars touched.
• Starting from pole position for the second time in his career, Leclerc almost led the race from start to finish but ended up just missing his first career win. Leclerc and Verstappen started the race 1-2 and, at an average age of 21 years, 265 days, they made for the youngest front row ever in a F1 race. Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas completed the podium, ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and championship leader Lewis Hamilton, who started fourth and lost time to replace the front wing of his Mercedes after 31 laps and finished fifth.