Top 5 Current Affairs: 3 April 2019
The United States has approved the sale of 24 multi-role MH-60 ‘Romeo’ Seahawk helicopters to India at an estimated cost of 2.4 billion US dollars.
US approves sale of 24 MH 60 helicopters to India
The United States has approved the sale of 24 multi-role MH-60 ‘Romeo’ Seahawk helicopters to India at an estimated cost of 2.4 billion US dollars. The announcement was made by the US State Department on April 2, 2019.
The MH-60 Romeo Seahawk helicopter is considered to be the world's most advanced maritime helicopter. Built by Lockheed Martin, the helicopters are designed to hunt down submarines, as well as knock out ships and conduct search-and-rescue operations at sea.
They will provide the Indian defence forces with the capability to perform anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare missions along with the ability to perform secondary missions including vertical replenishment, search and rescue and communications relay.
State of Global Air-2019 report released
Two US based institutes Health Effects Institute (HEI) and Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) recently released a detailed report on quality of the global air with title, “State of Global Air-2019”. Report indicates that India and China are collectively accounted for more than fifty percent of global 5 million deaths due to air pollution.
State of Global Air 2019 report also said that in 2017, exposure to PM 2.5 pollution was found to be the third leading risk factor globally for Type 2 diabetes. An estimated 846 million people in India (60% of the population) and 452 million people in China (32% of the population) were exposed to household air pollution in 2017.
UN, EU Report on global hunger
The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), World Food Programme (WFP) and EU “Global Report on Food Crises 2019”, shows that more than 100 million people worldwide are facing acute hunger and number is rising. Report finds that around 113 million people in 53 countries experienced acute food insecurity in 2018, compared to 124 million in 2017.
According to the report, from 2014 to 2020, the EU will have provided nearly 9 billion Euros for initiatives on food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture in over 60 countries. Nearly two-thirds of those facing acute hunger are in just 8 countries: Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. In 17 countries, acute hunger either remained the same or increased.
UN appoints investigation head for Myanmar
The UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres on April 2, 2019 announced the appointment of Nicholas Koumjian of the United States as the head of the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar.
International criminal justice lawyer Nicholas Koumjian will serve as the first head of the Independent Investigative Mechanism (IIM) for Myanmar, which was established by the Human Rights Council on September 27, 2018 and welcomed by the UN General Assembly in December 2018. Koumjian brings to the position over 35 years of experience as a prosecutor, including almost 20 years of experience in the field of international criminal justice.
The United Nations has appointed the American prosecutor to lead the effort to collect and analyse evidence that Myanmar perpetrated crimes against humanity against Rohingyas- the ethnic minority community, over the last eight years.
Bilateral Maritime Exercise ‘AUSINDEX-19’ begins
The third edition of ‘AUSINDEX-19’ (Australia India Exercise), bilateral maritime exercise between Indian Navy and Royal Australian Navy, began on April 2, 2019 with the arrival of Royal Australian Navy’s fleet at Visakhapatnam.
The exercise seeks to ‘strengthen and enhance mutual cooperation and interoperability between the Indian Navy and Royal Australian Navy, providing opportunities for interaction and exchange of professional views between the personnel of the two navies’.
The third edition would involve exercises in all three dimensions with focus on Anti-Submarine Warfare Systems (ASW).