Current Affairs

Mahindananda defends President

Current Affairs
Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage this evening clarified the conversation President Gotababya Rajapaksa had with former Minister Wijedasa Rajapakshe over the phone. Wijedasa Rajapakshe alleged that the President threatened him over the phone, but Minister, Aluthgamage addressing the press, discounted the fact and said there was no such vituperative exchange between them but only a clarification. The Minister alleged that it was clear that there was a political hand behind WijedasaRajapakshe addressing the media, which was given extensive coverage. The press briefing was held at the Abhayaramaya ...Continued

Chinese investments and Sri Lanka’s concerns

Current Affairs
A study initiated by Chatham House into Chinese investments and how best it could be utilisesd to rejuvenate the economy  reports that the cumulative value of Chinese infrastructure investment to Sri Lanka amounted to $12.1 billion between 2006 and July 2019. In view of the present Chinese Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) it is of crucial importance to understand the effects of such investments and how best Sri Lanka could maximize the benefits from Chinese infrastructure investments while minimizing any potential costs to ensure net ...Continued

After Snatching One Crown, Mrs. World Gives Up Her Own

Current Affairs
By Bryan Pietsch
Last year’s winner of Mrs. World, a beauty pageant for married women, said she would return her crown after she snatched one off the head of the 2021 winner of Mrs. Sri Lanka World, claiming that she was divorced — a violation of pageant rules. Pushpika de Silva had just been crowned Mrs. Sri Lanka World at a pageant in Colombo, Sri Lanka, last weekend when Caroline Jurie, the 2020 Mrs. World winner, took the stage and announced that “there is a rule that you ...Continued

Multiple issues stymie Lankan Provincial Council polls

Current Affairs
By P.K.Balachandran
  While there is pressure on Sri Lanka from India and the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to hold the long-delayed Provincial Council (PC) elections, several political factors are preventing the Gotabaya Rajapaksa government from holding the polls in the foreseeable future. Government ministers have said that the polls could be held at the end of 2021. But that seems more and more unlikely with every passing day. Firstly, the delimitation of constituencies for holding elections under the First Past the Post System remains a ...Continued

Who pays for Suez blockage? Ever Given grounding could spark...

Current Affairs
  After hauling its 220,000-ton bulk down the Suez canal a week after blocking the essential waterway, the Ever Given container ship is likely to become the centre of a protracted battle over who will pay for its rescue. The 400-metre-long vessel was aground on the banks of the Suez canal for a week, causing an estimated £7bn loss each day in trade owing to ships stuck on either side, and up to £10.9m a day for the canal. “We managed to refloat the ship ...Continued

Ship Is Freed After a Costly Lesson in the Vulnerabilities...

Current Affairs
By Vivian Yee
SUEZ, Egypt — For six days, billions of dollars’ worth of international commerce sat paralyzed at either end of the Suez Canal, stalled thanks to a single giant container ship apparently knocked sideways by a powerful southerly wind. The ship’s insurers and the canal authorities summoned the largest tugboats in the canal, then two even larger ones from further afield. They deployed diggers, front-end loaders and specialized dredgers to guzzle sand and mud from where the ship was lodged at both ends. They called in ...Continued

Resolving Human-Elephant Conflict without elimination

Current Affairs
By P.K.Balachandran
Earlier, elephants were not killed but captured and traded for use as draught animals, in war as mounts for commanders, and as attractions in temples and royal festivals.   Indian records show that the domestication of elephants dates back to 4,500 BCE. Hannibal, the great Carthaginian General, had crossed the Alps with elephants in 218 BCE. However, ivory hunting in Africa and the expansion of populations in Asia ended the domestication of elephants and increased their elimination. The HEC had led to mounting deaths on ...Continued

Chiefs of defence staff condemn use of lethal force against...

Current Affairs
Chiefs of defence staff in twelve countries in a rare statement condemned the atrocities s committee by the Myanmar armed forces against unarmed civilians.   “As Chiefs of Defense, we condemn the use of lethal force against unarmed people by the Myanmar Armed Forces and associated security services,” the statement says. “A professional military follows international standards for conduct and is responsible for protecting — not harming — the people it serves. We urge the Myanmar Armed Forces to cease violence and work to restore ...Continued

How will the Suez Canal blockage affect supply chains?

Current Affairs
Efforts continued on Thursday to dislodge the Ever Given container ship and restore traffic on the critical man-made waterway that connects the Mediterranean to the Red Sea and provides a shipping shortcut between Europe and Asia. How vital is the canal to shipping? About 10% of all global trade flows through the 193-kilometer-long canal, which allows tankers and container ships to avoid a long trip around the southern tip of Africa. The iconic shipping journal Lloyd’s List estimates that goods worth $9.6 billion pass through ...Continued

One mistake after the other.’ How AstraZeneca went from pandemic...

Current Affairs
By Julia Horowitz, CNN Business
The Anglo-Swedish drugmaker mistakenly gave some volunteers a half dose of the vaccine during clinical trials, and it has been criticized for omitting crucial information from its public statements. US regulators have questioned the accuracy of its vaccine data, and severe production delays in Europe have resulted in a political firestorm and a breakdown in relations with EU leaders. “What we have with AstraZeneca is a company that is not straightforward, that cannot be relied upon,” Philippe Lamberts, a Belgian member of the European Parliament, ...Continued

Resolution on Lanka is a bid to undermine its development...

Current Affairs
Ambassador for China, in the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Chen Xu speaking on the resolution against Sri Lanka commended Sri Lanka for its commitment to promoting and protecting human rights, advancing sustainable economic and social development, improving people’s living standards, safeguarding the rights of vulnerable groups, advancing national reconciliation and combating terrorism, and congratulates the government of Sri Lanka on its achievements in the above-mentioned areas. Ambassador Chen said that according to UN General Assembly resolution 60/251, the work of the Human Rights Council ...Continued

China to introduce ‘forest chief’ scheme nationwide

Current Affairs
China has issued a guideline to implement a “forest chief” scheme nationwide amid the country’s continuous efforts to protect forests and grasslands. It was issued by the general offices of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council and urged that the “forest chief” scheme be rolled out nationwide by June 2022. “General forest chiefs” should be appointed in all provincial-level regions, said the guideline. It clarified all levels of forest chiefs’ responsibilities in protecting forest and grassland resources. Under the scheme, ...Continued

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