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Today’s important articles/news in various newspapers (12th December)

Dear aspirants, following are the links of various articles taken from various newspapers. Click the link to read further. To get notification, follow the blog. Thank you

1. Raja Mandala: Indian diplomacy, beyond the canon

New Delhi’s engagement with several nations signals a maturing of foreign policy in keeping with its changing interests in a multipolar world.

Prelims: Bodhi Parva, BIMSTEC, two plus two dialogue,  G-20, East Asia Summit, BRICS, Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, Commonwealth forum
Mains: India’s rising stature in multi polar world

Multi-directional foreign policy

  1. India’s intensive diplomatic engagements this week help us better frame Delhi’s unfolding multi-directional foreign policy
  2.  India can sit with the US and its allies one day and hold consultations with the Russians and Chinese the next
  3. This reflects a definitive pragmatism rooted in the rise of India and the emergence of multipolar world

Bodhi Parva

  1. It was a celebration of Buddhist heritage to mark the 20th anniversary of a Bay of Bengal Forum, the BIMSTEC
  2. It brings together five South Asian nations (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal and Sri Lanka) and two South East Asian nations (Burma and Thailand)

Idea of minilateralism

  1. Along with cultural, digital and physical connectivity, the idea of minilateralism with multiple partners has become an important theme in Indian diplomacy
  2. Delhi’s support for the renewal of the quadrilateral security dialogue marked its emphasis on ad hoc and flexible arrangements to pursue India’s interests in a more complex world

Multiple engagements

  1. Delhi is hosting the Russian and Chinese foreign ministers this week as part of a continuing trilateral engagement over the last decade and a half
  2. It then holds another trilateral forum with Japan and Australia this week
  3. This supplements the quadrilateral dialogue as well as the on-going trilateral engagement with the US and Japan
  4. Delhi is also holding the first-ever “two plus two” dialogue with Australia in which the foreign and defense secretaries from the two countries sit together

Quad is India’s answer to China

  1. Quadrilateral dialogue with the US, Afghanistan, and Pakistan was China’s effort to construct a “new type of great power relations” with the United States
  2. Russia is also interested in a grand bargain with America under President Donald Trump
  3. Thus, India’s commitment to non-alignment can be rested for now
  4. India needs to secure its interests in an increasingly uncertain world

Pragmatism after the Cold War

  1. Delhi looked beyond the Non-Aligned Movement
  2. The opening to the West in general and the United States in particular, the trilateral engagement with Russia and China and the quadrilateral security dialogue were all initiated and advanced by the governments led by P.V. Narasimha Rao, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, and Manmohan Singh
  3. Today India is part of such diverse organizations like the G-20, East Asia Summit, BRICS, and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation
  4. Delhi is now looking more positively at the Commonwealth forum that brings more than 50 members together

India’s changed position and way forward

  1. Today as one of the world’s top economies with growing military potential, India is in a position to shape the great power politics and influence the balance of power in the Indo-Pacific and Eurasia
  2. As the weakest among the major powers in the unfolding multipolar world, Delhi needs to advance in all directions and engage more actively with a variety of minilateral and multilateral forums

2. In an elite club: On India’s Wassenaar entry

Prelims: Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), the Australia Group
Mains: India’s nuclear program, NSG bid and way forward

India’s admittance into the Wassenaar Arrangement

  1. This is a big step forward in India’s quest for formal acceptance as a responsible nuclear power
  2. As a non-signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), New Delhi has been at pains to convey to the international community that it adheres to, and is invested in, a rules-based order

About Wassenaar Agreement

  1. The Wassenaar Arrangement was founded in 1996
  2. Its stated aim is “to contribute to regional and international security and stability, by promoting transparency and greater responsibility in transfers of conventional arms and dual-use goods and technologies, thus preventing destabilizing accumulations.”
  3. It is clubbed with mechanisms such as the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) and the Australia Group
  4. It comes on the heels of membership last year of the MTCR

Need for quiet diplomacy in sensitive nuclear issues

  1. India did a botched attempt to gain entry to the NSG last year
  2. While India’s efforts at the NSG were stopped by China, which is not a member of the Wassenaar Arrangement, raising the pitch publicly at the time came with costs
  3. It made the task of forging a consensus on membership to the NSG more difficult

Way forward

  1. The Wassenaar Arrangement will embed India deeper in the global non-proliferation architecture and enable access to critical technologies in the defense and space sectors
  2. The Australia Group, which focusses on biological and chemical weapons, may be easier to crack given that China is not a member
  3. As more and more countries are signing on to India’s steadily strengthening credentials in the nuclear area, there is hope that a fresh momentum will be imparted to a future bid for the NSG

3. No WTO deal without food security: India

Prelims: WTO, WTO Ministerial Conference, Doha Round of negotiations, Trade Facilitation in Services (TFS) Agreement
Mains: Issues related to food security and WTO agreements

Issue of public stockholding crucial

  1. India has said it cannot envisage any negotiated outcome, at the ongoing meeting of the World Trade Organisation’s apex decision-making body, which does not include successful resolution of the food security right issue
  2. At the Plenary Session of the WTO Ministerial Conference (MC), India’s commerce and industry minister said the permanent solution for public stockholding for food security purposes is a matter of survival for 800 million hungry and undernourished people in the world

What does India want?

  1. India wants the WTO membership to re-endorse the centrality of development (the agenda to improve the trading prospects of developing nations) in WTO negotiations without creating new sub-categories of countries
  2. This is in the context of attempts by certain rich countries to wreck the broad unity among developing nations on a host of issues
  3. Developed countries such as U.S. have suggested that countries such as India and China are currently emerging economies and reasonably strong in trade — unlike others in the developing world
  4. Therefore, such powerful nations that are still in the ‘developing’ category do not deserve to gain from the favorable treatment meant only for developing nations in WTO Agreements

‘No’ to ‘new issues’

  1. India opposed the endeavor of certain countries to include ‘new issues’ — such as e-commerce, investment facilitation and matters relating to small firms — in the ongoing Doha Round of negotiations
  2. The Minister also pushed India’s proposal for a Trade Facilitation in Services (TFS) Agreement, which, among other things, aims to liberalize rules on movement of professionals and skilled workers across borders for temporary work/projects

4. Flawed economics?

The article “A misleading hunger index” (Dec. 4) could have been ignored for its wrong understanding of both epidemiology and nutrition if it wasn’t for the fact that its authors are members of the NITI Aayog.

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