Current Affairs in Short: 15 May 2019

India was invited to be an Observer in the meetings of Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO). The invitation was sent by CTBTO executive secretary Lassina Zerbo.

May 15, 2019 18:50 IST

Mexico City declares Environmental Emergency

• Mexico City recently declared environmental emergency after the City’s air quality sharply worsened as a result of a series of wildfires.
• Smoke from nearby wildfires pushed pollution of the city to levels deemed potentially harmful to human health.
• The capital ordered vehicles to stop plying and postponed the semi-finals of the first-division football league.   
• City's outskirts Pollution levels  crossed over 150 points on the authorities' Air Quality Index.


17 developing countries call for strengthening WTO

• 17 developing pressed the need of strengthening the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to promote development, benefitting all the members.
• In this regard, a 13 point declaration was signed by the member nations at the end of the two-day Ministerial meeting of developing countries in New Delhi. A total of 22 countries attended the meeting.
• Some of the signatories were Egypt, Barbados, Jamaica, Malaysia, India, Indonesia and South Africa.
• The  WTO reform will promote inclusive growth and fully take into account the interests and concerns of developing members.

Kiki Bertens wins Women’s Singles Title in Madrid Open tennis

• Kiki Bertens of The Netherlands won the Women’s Singles Title in Madrid Open tennis, defeating Simona Halep in a surprise 6-4, 6-4 victory.
• With this victory, Bertens became first woman ever to win Madrid singles title championship without dropping a set.
• Madrid Open Tennis is also known as the Mutua Madrid Open. It is currently sponsored by Mutua Madrileña.
• It is a men’s and women’s joint professional tennis tournament and is held every year in Madrid, Spain.

6 US Catholic dioceses announce abuse compensation programme

• Six Catholic dioceses in California, United States launched a compensation programme for minors sexually abused by clerics.
• The move came after the Church considered that some victims are reluctant to come to the church for assistance.
• The programme comes as an alternative to court proceedings.
• It will be managed by two independent monitors who have experience in handling similar programs in New York and Pennsylvania.
• It will provide pastoral care and financial support to individuals sexually abused as a minor by a diocesan priest.

UN imposes sanctions on terror group 'ISIS Khorasan'

• The United Nations imposed sanctions on terror group Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant - Khorasan (ISIL-K).
• ISIS-K is known as 'ISIS' South Asia Branch, ISIL Khorasan, Islamic State's Khorasan Province' and 'South Asian Chapter of ISIL'.
• ISIS-Khorasan has its links with Al-Qaeda and has involvement in several attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
• The group was formed in 2015 by a Pakistani national who was a former commander of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan terror group.
• With the sanctions, ISIS-Khorasan will be now subject to the assets freeze, travel ban and arms embargo.

Arunachal has 35% of India's graphite deposits: GSI

• Arunachal has 35 percent of the country's Graphite deposits as per the Geological Survey of India (GSI).
• The State could become a leading producer of graphite in the country in future.
• The GSI also emphasised that the survey and drilling activities of the GSI should be moved towards the lndo-China international Border as China has been reportedly undertaking huge mining activities across the border in Tibet.
• The development of road towards this international border would be a boon for exploration of the graphite for India.

India invited to be an Observer at meetings of Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organisation

• India was invited to be an Observer in the meetings of Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO).
• The invitation was sent by CTBTO executive secretary Lassina Zerbo.
• With this move, India would have access to data from the International Monitoring System.
• International Monitoring System is a network of 337 facilities - 321 monitoring stations and 16 radionuclide labs.
• The system can detect even a small nuclear explosion using technologies like seismology, hydroacoustics, infrasound and radionuclide.