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News in Short

News in Short - 27-February-2021

US carries out airstrike against Iran-backed militia in Syria

Date: 27 February 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • US President Joe Biden has directed U.S. military airstrikes in eastern Syria against facilities belonging to Iran-backed militia.
  • The strikes destroyed multiple facilities at a border control point used by a number of Iranian-backed militant groups, including Kata’ib Hezbollah (KH) and Kata’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada (KSS).
  • The decision to carry out these strikes was meant to send a signal that while the United States wanted to punish the militias, it did not want the situation to spiral into a bigger conflict.

Government to monitor OTT content

Date: 27 February 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • For the first time, the government, under the ambit of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021, has brought in detailed guidelines for digital content on both digital media and Over The Top (OTT) platforms.
  • The new rules lay down a three-tier grievance redressal mechanism. One will be at the level of each OTT provider. Each complaint will have to be addressed within 15 days.
  • If the complaint is not satisfactorily addressed, then the complainant can scale it up to a self-regulatory body collectively established by the OTTs.
  • This body will be headed by a retired judge of the Supreme Court, a High Court, or an independent eminent person from the field of media, broadcasting, entertainment, child rights, human rights or other relevant fields.
  • This self-regulatory body also has “censuring” powers in case of any incriminating content.

Pakistan to remain on FATF Grey list

Date: 27 February 2021 Tags: International Organizations
  • The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has decided to retain Pakistan on the “greylist” till the next review of its performance on the recommendations during the June Plenary session.
  • Although Pakistan had made a significant progress, it was still to fully comply with three of the 27-point action plan it had been presented with in June 2018 when it was first put on the “greylist”. He urged Pakistan to make fast progress on the remaining obligations.
  • The three points on which the FATF has sought urgent action by Pakistan pertain to effective steps — in terms of financial sanctions and penalties — against the terror funding infrastructure and the entities involved.
  • After assessing the measures taken during the June session, the FATF would verify the implementation and test the sustainability of reforms undertaken by Pakistan to this end.

Saudi Arabia allows women to join armed forces

Date: 27 February 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous
  • Women in Saudi Arabia can now take up arms and enter the military, the latest profession in the kingdom to open up to female recruits.
  • Saudi Arabian women can be employed as soldiers, lance corporals, corporals, sergeants, and staff sergeants.
  • Jobs have been gradually opening up for Saudi women, whose increased participation in the workforce is part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s plans to transform the Arab world’s largest economy.
  • The plan to allow women into the military was first announced in 2019, the same year the kingdom said it would allow women to leave the country without permission from a male relative, a major step toward ending a restrictive guardianship system that has been heavily criticised at home and abroad.

Poet Vishnu Narayan Namboothiri passes away

Date: 27 February 2021 Tags: Obituaries
  • Eminent poet and academic Vishnu Narayan Namboothiri, passed away in Thiruvananthapuram. He was 81.
  • Noted for the depth of his scholarship in the literature and philosophy of India and the west, Vishnu Narayanan Namboothiri was highly respected as a teacher and orator and represented the finest traditions of contemporary Malayalam poetry.
  • Namboothiri received the Kerala Sahithya Akademi Award in 1979 and the Central Sahitya Akademi Award in 1994. The nation honoured him with the Padma Shri in 2014.