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November 2018

Day by Day Current Affairs (November 17, 2018) | MCQs for CSS, PMS, NTS

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WELCOME TO CSS TIMES DAY BY  DAY CURRENT AFFAIRS, YOUR BEST SOURCE FOR UP-TO-DATE AND DAILY TOP CURRENT AFFAIRS 2018 FOR PREPARATION OF CSS, PMS, BANKING, NTS, RAILWAYS AND ALL COMPETITIVE EXAMS.  “DAY TO DAY CURRENT AFFAIRS” BASICALLY IS TOP 10 NEWS SUMMARY ON CURRENT HAPPENINGS OF NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL IMPORTANCE FOR ALL EXAMINATIONS

 November 17, 2018: National Current Affairs

1. 4th International Faiz festival gets grand opening with Shabana Azmi, Javed Akhtar

• The elegance and splendor of Lahore`s cultural calendar -4th International Faiz Festival-swung open its doors to Faiz`s lovers and literati at Alhamra Art Centre, The Mall, on November 16, 2018.
• The festival saw a grand opening of the festival with Indian film icon Shabana Azmi and Urdu poet and screenplay writer Javed Akhtar the jam-packed Hall-1 of the art centre where audience responded well to the interesting anecdotes of the former and poems of the latter.
• They both were a part of the session, Kaifi Aur Faiz. Mira Hashmi and Adeel Hashmi engaged Shabana and Salima Hashmi in a talk about their fathers, both giants of Urdu poetry.
• The festival would continue until Sunday

2. SC suspends CM`s power in ACE cases

• The Supreme Court on November 16, 2018 suspended the rules of Anti-Corruption Establishment (ACE), which required it to seek permission from chief minister prior to initiate an inquiry, register a case or arrest an officer of BS-20 or above.
• These rules were made during previous rule of Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) by then governor on Feb 7, 2014 in exercise of powers under section 6 of the Punjab Anti-Corruption Establishment Ordinance 1961. Incumbent Governor of Punjab Chaudhry Sarwar of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf was in the office during his first stint from 2013 to 2015.
• ACE Director General had written a letter to Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar stating that all such powers should vest with the office of the director general instead of the chief minister.
• The suspended sections of the ACE rules state that no inquiry or case shall be initiated/ dropped or registered respectively against a district coordination officer of a district government, a commissioner of a division, a secretary to the government, a head of an attached department, and any other officer of BPS-20 and above without prior permission in writing of the chief minister. In case of officers in BPS-19 such permission may be accorded by the chief secretary.

3. IMF best option for Pakistan: US

• The US wants to see Pakistan break the cycle of going to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and adapt structural reforms to stabilise the economy, said the Economic Counsellor at US Embassy Michael A. Sullivan.
• The counsellor said that `we certainly believe that IMF-led programme is the best possible option for Pakistan`.
• Pakistan has had 12 IMF programmes since 1988, spending more time under the fund-led policies than the democratically elected governments.
• On a question whether US will support Pakistan`s request to IMF for assistance, Sullivan said the US is ready to provide assistance to Pakistan`s government.
• The counselor said that Pakistan needs economic certainty to achieve sustainable growth.

4. PIA restores flights to Muscat, Sharjah

• In an attempt to expand its business, the Pakistan International Airlines has announced restoration of flights to Muscat and Sharjah from two more cities.
• The flight operation on the two routes has remained suspended for more than a year.
• The operation on the Lahore-Muscat and Sialkot-Sharjah routes would begin from Nov 17 and Nov 20, respectively.
• PIA would operate flights every Saturday and Sunday on the Lahore-Muscat route.
• With the introduction of new flights, the national carrier will have a total of nine flights to Muscat operating from Peshawar, Turbat and Gwadar.

November 16, 2018: International Current Affairs

5. Beijing forum stresses joint efforts to counter propaganda against CPEC

• Lawmakers and opinion makers from China and Pakistan on November 16, 2018 called for joint efforts to highlight cooperation between the two countries and counter propaganda against the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) framework.
• The multi-billion dollar flagship project of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) launched by China would remain a distant reality unless concrete steps were taken to project its true perspective.
• This was the overall impression given by Chinese and Pakistani speakers at a day-long CPEC media forum organised by the China Economic Net and Pakistan-China Institute in Beijing.
• In his opening remarks, Senate Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Mushahid Hussain Sayed said that the CPE Chad become a success story within a period of five years. He said that work was progressing well on the building of Gwadar port and Thar coal power and mining project as well as other infrastructure development projects and asked the media to focus on the development process and counter propaganda being generated by the vested interests.

6. US spent $113m in Pakistan during 2018: report

• The United States spent $113.3 million on key programmes in Pakistan during 2018, says a US State Department report released on November 16, 2018.
• The financial report for the fiscal year 2018 shows that between Oct 1, 2017 and Sept 30, 2018 the department spent $8.7 billion on its principal activities.
• Within the total, $5bn supported ongoing programme operations and $3.7bn went towards the Worldwide Security Protection programme to strengthen security for diplomatic personnel and facilities.
• Major elements of this funding included $958m to support operations of the US Mission in Iraq; $858.3m for activities in Afghanistan; $113.3m for key programmes and activities in Pakistan; and $1.1bn for supporting operations in other areas of unrest, including high threat, high risk posts. The report notes that the department also appropriated $6.1bn for Foreign Military Funding (FMF), the majority of which is allocated to Israel, Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan and Iraq.
• The department does not specify how much of it actually went to Pakistan but it does say that the US Defence Security Cooperation Agency supports Counterinsurgency Capability and Peacekeeping Operations programmes in the country.

7. Japan`s PM lays wreath in Australian city bombed in WWII

• Shinzo Abe became the first prime minister of Japan to visit Darwin since the northern Australian city was bombed by Japanese forces in World War II, as he and his Australian counterpart spoke on November 16, 2018 of strengthening defence and other ties between their countries.
• Abe`s one-night stay was described by Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison as a deeply symbolic one. It was also another chance for Japan and Australia to present a united front as regional partners in the Asia-Pacific amid ongoing concerns of spreading Chinese influence, including the country`s building of islands in the disputed South China Sea.
• `Australia and Japan also stand united on the importance of resolving disputes in the South China Sea, peacefully and in accordance with international law, and we are strongly opposed to any actions that could increase tensions within the region, Morrison said., reading from a prepared statement after meeting Abe.He added that a `stable and secure regional maritime … order is central to both Australia and Japan`s visions for the region, and is underpinned by respect for international law.` Morrison also said he looked forward to increased cooperation with Japan to support regional maritime safety and security. The leaders said they hope to conclude early next year an agreement on increased defence links, including more joint military exercises.

8. North Korea tests new `ultramodern tactical weapon`

• North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has overseen the testing of a `newly developed ultramodern tactical weapon` Pyongyang`s state media reported on November 16, 2018, a move seen by analysts as more of a political message than a serious provocation.
• It marked the first official report of a weapons test by North Korea since it began a delicate diplomatic process with Washington over its nuclear and missile programme.
• The weapon could be a long-range cannon that the North has been developing for many years.
• `Kim Jong Un visited the test ground of the Academy of Defence Science and supervised a newly developed ultramodern tactical weapon test.

9. US votes against UN censure of Israel over Golan

• For the first time, the United States voted on November 16, 2018 against an annual UN resolution condemning Israel`s occupation of the Golan Heights, dropping its practice of abstaining in the vote.
• The non-binding resolution was adopted in a General Assembly committee by a vote of 151 to 2, with the United States and Israel the only two countries opposing the measure. Fourteen countries abstained.
• US Ambassador Nikki Haley called the resolution `useless` and `plainly biased against Israel,` citing concerns about Iran`s military role in Syria to oppose the measure.
• `Further, the atrocities the Syrian regime continues to commit prove its lack of fitness to govern anyone. The destructive influence of the Iranian regime inside Syria presents major threats to international security.

10. Tajikistan opens $4bn dam, sets sights on exportable electricity

• Tajik President Emomali Rakhmon on November 16, 2018 inaugurated what is expected to be the world`s tallest hydroelectric power plant, a $3.9 billion project that will turn the impoverished authoritarian country into a key power producer in Central Asia.
• In a colourful ceremony in the Pamir mountains, the Tajik leader pushed a large symbolic button to applause from the audience to mark the first of six turbines in the Rogun hydroelectric dam going online.
• World Bank`s vice president for Europe and Central Asia, Cyril Muller, said at the ceremony that Rogun would `help transformTajikistan`s economy, and create the foundation for a prosperous future`.

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