International Current Affairs | June 2021

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International Current Affairs | June 2021

International Current Affairs- June, 2021

16th June, 2021

WHO identifies the ‘Lambda’ variant of COVID-19 variant in 29 countries

World Health Organization (WHO) has identified a new variant of COVID-19 virus in 29 countries. It has been named after a Greek alphabet ‘Lambda’ (ƛ). WHO has declared the ‘Lambda’ variant of COVID-19 as a global ‘Variant of Interest’ on 14th June, 2021 after observing an elevated presence (81 % of the total cases of COVID-19 since April, 2021) in South America. WHO believes that the ‘Lambda’ variant has originated in South America. The variant has been also found in Chile (32 %), Argentina and Ecuador in a considerable proportion.   

13th June, 2021

Albania, Brazil, Ghana, Gabon and UAE elected to UNSC for 2022-23

During the 75th session of the General Assembly, Albania, Brazil, Ghana, Gabon and United Arab Emirates (UAE) were elected as non-permanent members to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for 2022-23. The newly elected non-permanent members will replace Estonia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Niger, Tunisia and Vietnam as their terms will expire on 31st December, 2021. UNSC comprises of 15 members out of which, 5 members (USA, UK, France, Russia and China) are the veto-wielding members and 10 are the non-permanent members (Norway, Mexico, Kenya, Ireland, India and the other newly elected countries).

Declaration to end AIDS by 2030 gets UNGA’s approval

The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) has approved the declaration for ending Acquired Immuno-Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) by 2030. The declaration was approved during the UNGA High Level Meeting on Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)/ AIDS. The declaration aims to bring down annual new HIV infections to under 3,70,000 and annual AIDS-related deaths below 2,50,000 by 2025. UNGA aims to eradicate all sorts of HIV-related stigma and discrimination. The declaration aims to push the development of vaccine for HIV.

12th June, 2021

Rebeca Grynspan becomes the Secretary General of UNCTAD

Rebeca Grynspan has been appointed as the Secretary General of United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). She is an economist by profession and has also served as the Vice-President of Costa Rica. Her appointment was approved by UN’s Secretary General, Antonio Guterres. Rebeca has become the first woman as well as the first Central American to get appointed as UNCTAD’s Secretary General. Rebeca has also served as the Regional Director of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for Latin America and the Caribbean.  

10th June, 2021

Ukhnaa Khurelsukh wins the Presidential Elections of Mongolia

Mongolia’s former Prime Minister (2017-2021), Ukhnaa Khurelsukh has won the Presidential Elections of Mongolia by defeating Sodnomzundui Erdene (Democratic Party) and Dangaasuren Enkhbat (Right Person Electorate Coalition). He will assume his post as the 6th democratically elected President of Mongolia. He was the candidate of Mongolian People’s Party. He will replace the incumbent President, Khaltmaa Battulga. Ukhnaa resigned from the post of Mongolia’s Prime Minister in January, 2021 following the nationwide protests against the mismanagement of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Ukhnaa has also served as the Deputy Prime Minister twice between 2014 and 2017.  

UNSC elects Antonio Guterres as the Secretary General of UN for the 2nd consecutive time

Members of United Nations Security Council have elected 72-year old Antonio Guterres as the Secretary General of United Nations (UN) for his second consecutive term for the next 5 years. All the members voted in favour of Antonio’s 2nd term as UN Secretary General even after 10 other candidates applied for the post. The other 10 other were non-formal candidates and were not endorsed by any of the 193 UN member states.

9th June, 2021

El Salvador becomes the 1st country to legalize Bticoin

El Salvador has made the largest cryptocurrency ‘Bitcoin’ a legal tender across the country. President Nayib Bukele said that this will bring financial inclusion, investment, innovation, tourism and economic development for the country. This decision was approved by after 62 out of 84 votes were in favor of its legalization in the Congress of El Salvador. This decision might affect International Monetary Fund‘s programme in El Salvador. US Dollar is also a legal tender in El Salvador as the country does not have its own currency.

Choguel Kokalla becomes the new Prime Minister of Mali

Choguel Kokalla Maiga has been named the transitional Prime Minister of Mali after Assimi Goita became the transitional President of Mali. The arrest of former PM, Moctor Ouane and former President, Bah Ndaw by the military, led them to resign from their respective posts. Choguel Kokalla is the President of the Strategic Committee of the Movement of June 5- Rally of Patriotic Forces (M5-RFP). He has also served as the Minister of Industry and Commerce (200-2007) and the Minister of Digital Economy, Information and Communication (2015-2016).

8th June,2021

Foreign Minister of Maldives gets elected as the President of the 76th session of UNGA

Foreign Minister of the Maldives, Abdulla Shahid has been elected as the President of 76th session of United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). He secured 143 votes out of 191 ballots cast in his favor whereas 48 members votes against him. The 76th session of UNGA will commence from September, 2021.He will succeed Volkan Bozkir of Turkey in the upcoming days. As per the rules of UNGA, the President of the 76th session of the UNGA has to elected from the group of Asia-Pacific states.

6th June, 2021

APG retains Pakistan on ‘Enhanced Follow-Up’ Status

Pakistan has been retained on ‘Enhanced follow-up’ status for sufficient outstanding requirements by the FATF’s regional body, Asia Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG). Pakistan’s rating improved in 21 out of 40 recommendations of Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Pakistan is now ‘compliant’ with 7 recommendations, ‘largely compliant’ with 24 recommendations and ‘non-compliant with 2 recommendations. Pakistan was added to the ‘Grey List’ by FATF in June, 2018 that prevented Pakistan from getting investments, aids and remittances from international organizations like International Monetary Fund (IMF).

2nd June, 2021

Isaac Herzog to become the 11th President of Israel

Isaac Herzog has been elected as the 11th President of Israel. Isaac is a veteran politician and former leader of Labor Party. He will replace the current President, Reuven Rivlin and assume his charge on 9th July, 2021 for a tenure of 7 years. Isaac Herzog defeated Miriam Peretz by gaining the support of 87 lawmakers and 120 members in the secret ballot held in Knesset (Parliament) of Israel. Miriam secured just 27 votes. Isaac has also served as a lawmaker in the Knesset between 2003 and 2018.