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Daily GK Updates: 21-22nd Sept 2014

1.    John Key re-elected as the Prime Minister of New Zealand for a third term
i. John Key was re-elected as the Prime Minister of New Zealand for a third term. This was revealed by the preliminary results released by the Electoral Commission of New Zealand. He has led New Zealand as the Prime Minister since 2008.
ii. In the 2014 General Elections of New Zealand held on 20 September 2014, the centre-right National Party led by John Key won 48 percent of the vote.
iii. The Labour Party of New Zealand led by David Cunliffe won 25 percent of the votes whereas the Green Party won 10 percent and New Zealand First (NZF) party won 9 percent of the total votes.
2.    Ashraf Ghani declared next Afghanistan new president
i. Afghanistan's election commission on Sunday has named Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai as the winner of the country's presidential election.
ii. The commission's announcement came hours after Ghani Ahmadzai signed a power sharing agreement with opponent Abdullah Abdullah, who will fill the newly created position of government chief executive.
iii. A Ghani Ahmadzai supporter — Halim Fidai, a former governor — said Sunday that UN representative Jan Kubish told the commission not to release detailed vote tallies.
3.    Voreqe Bainimarama sworn in as Fiji's PM 
i. Coup leader Voreqe Bainimarama was sworn in as Fiji's new Prime Minister on Monday.
ii. With official results confirming Voreqe Bainimarama had swept the election with almost 60 per cent of the vote, he was sworn in by President Epeli Nailatikau at a brief ceremony in Suva's Government House. 
iii. The final count in the election gave Bainimarama's Fiji First Party 59.2 per cent of the vote, equating to 32 seats in the new 50-seat parliament set up under a constitution introduced last year. 
iv. The Social Democratic Liberal Party was a distant second at 28.2 per cent (15 seats), with the National Federation Party next on 5.5 (three seats). 
4.    Alibaba IPO ranks as world's biggest after additional shares sold
i. Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's initial public offering now ranks as the world's biggest in history at $25 billion, after the e-commerce giant and some of its shareholders sold additional shares.
ii. The IPO surpassed the previous global record set by Agricultural Bank of China Ltd in 2010 when the bank raised $22.1 billion.
iii. Under the option, Alibaba agreed to sell 26.1 million additional shares and Yahoo Inc 18.3 million, netting the two companies an extra $1.8 billion and $1.2 billion respectively.
iv. Jack Ma founder of Alibaba agreed to sell an extra 2.7 million shares and company co-founder Joe Tsai agreed to sell 902,782 additional shares, according to the prospectus.


5. Yemen Government and Houthi rebels signed peace deal

Who: Yemen peace deal
Where: in Sanaa, the capital of Yemen
What: signed between Yemen Government and Shiite Houthi rebels
When: 21 September 2014
Why: The peace deal aims to put an end to the violence in the country

Yemen President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi on 21 September 2014 signed a peace deal in Sanaa, the capital of Yemen, with Shiite Houthi rebels. The peace deal aims to put an end to the violence in the country.

The deal was signed at the Presidential palace in the presence of President Hadi, the UN envoy to Yemen Jamal Benomar and representatives of Yemen's political forces, including the Houthi rebels.

Following the deal, the Prime Minister Mohammed Basindwa submitted his resignation to President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi. He resigned because under the ceasefire deal, present Government led by Prime Minister was to resign and a new government with wider representation was to be formed.

Other aspects of the deal
• The deal asks for formation of a new government within one month.
• It also says that the President Abdrabuh Mansour al-Hadi will also appoint advisers from the Houthi rebels and southern separatists within three days.
• The President will also name the new premier within three days that will replace Basindawa, the Prime Minister. The new premier must be neutral and should not belong to any party.
• The deal also asks for continuation of the fuel subsidy.

The deal was signed after the rebel groups seized strategic positions of the country that included the Government headquarters in capital Sanaa.

Comment
The violence broke out in the state on 16 September 2014. The rebels were demanding the sacking of current Government, more shares in power and retention of the fuel subsidy.

This violence resulted in death of about 140 people and also forced thousands to flee. But it seems that, the UN-brokered peace deal between Houthi rebels and Yemen's government will also end the violence and lift seize from parts of capital Sanna by Houthi rebels.

6.    UP government to set Nirbhaya Centers in all districts
i. The Uttar Pradesh government on 19 September 2014 decided to open Nirbhaya Centers in all districts of the state. These Nirbhaya Centers will provide prompt help to the victims of crime against women and also facilitate lodging of FIRs.
ii. As per the decision made during the meet, the Nirbhaya centers will be set up in women hospitals or women police stations with the view to provide immediate medical and other help to the victims of crime or violence against women.
7.    NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft enters Mars orbit
i. NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft began orbiting Mars on a mission to study how the Red Planet’s climate changed over time from warm and wet to cold and dry.
ii. “Based on observed navigation data, congratulations. MAVEN is now in orbit,” said Dave Folta of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.
iii. The unmanned orbiter has travelled more than 10 months and 711 million kilometres to reach Mars yesterday for a first-of-its kind study of the planet’s upper atmosphere.
iv. The data from the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) spacecraft aims to help scientists understand what happened to the water on Mars and the carbon dioxide in its atmosphere several billion years ago.
8.    Hockey India inducted Hockey Village India as an academy member
i. Hockey India (HI) on 19 September 2014 inducted Hockey Village India (HVI) as an Academy Member to reach out to underprivileged children who are keen to make a career in the sport.
ii. At present, Hockey India has 26 permanent Members, 23 associate Members, one Member through State Olympic Associations, eight Academy Members and one Hoc-Key Member.
iii. Hockey India has always strived to reach the underprivileged children those who in spite of having the talent cannot reach the big platform. Now the HVI on board will strengthen work towards reaching out and identifying the talent.
9.    Saurav Ghosal 1st Indian to make Asiad final, Pallikal gets bronze
i. Saurav Ghosal became the first Indian to enter the Asian Games final, beating 2006 champion Ong Beng Hee while Dipika Pallikal secured the country its maiden women's singles medal, a bronze, after losing the semifinal to world number one Nicol David in Incheon on Monday.
ii. Top seed and World No.16 Ghosal lived up to his billing, outplaying 35th-ranked Beng Hee of Malaysia 11-9 11-4 11-5 in 45 minutes on the glass court of Yeorumul Squash Courts. 
iii. The two players have beaten each other once on the PSA professional tour but Ghosal had lost to Beng Hee in the team semifinal of the Asian Championships in June. 

iv. Ghosal today was too good for his 34-year-old Malaysian opponent, who had won gold in the 2002 Busan and 2006 Doha edition besides getting a bronze in Guangzhou four years ago. 
10.  Federer replaces injured Nadal in Indian team for IPTL
i. The IPTL, brainchild of Mahesh Bhupathi, on Monday announced that Swiss great Roger Federer will replace Rafael Nadal in the Indian team for the new tennis league as the Spaniard has pulled out due to injury.
ii. Federer, the 17-time Grand Slam winner, was not part of the original squads announced by organisers of the Indian Premier Tennis League.
iii. Nadal, who has 14 Grand Slams to his name, had also pulled out of this year’s US Open due to a wrist injury.
iv. Federer joins American great Pete Sampras, former world number one Ana Ivanovic, Frenchman Gael Monfils along with India’s Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna in the squad. Fabrice Santoro is reserve player of the squad.
v. Russian superstar Maria Sharapova will also be now part of the league as she joins the Philippines team, which earlier had Victoria Azarenka.
Note:i.  The league will kick off on November 28 in Manila and conclude in Dubai on December 13.
ii. The Delhi leg will be played from December 6-8 at Indira Gandhi Indoor stadium.

11.Unicode Based Mobile App Launched In Kannada
The Chief Minister of Karnataka Siddaramaiah launched a Unicode-based mobile phone application to enable Kannada interface in Android phones. The source code of the app can be downloaded free of cost by the users from the website of the Kannada and Culture Department. The language was launched in a bid to improve the usage of Kannada on mobile phones and tabs. Earlier, the app linked to the Kannada language was available through private players but now the Government has officially introduced the app.

12. All India Radio Launches News SMS service In Five Indian Languages
Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar launched public broadcaster All India Radio’s (AIR) free News SMS service in five Indian languages — Hindi, Marathi, Sanskrit, Dogri and Nepal. AIR news SMS service in English is already in operation from the September last year. Over three lakh people already are availing this service on their mobiles.
13. Forge your Future book launched by APJ Abdul Kalam.
14. Amith Mathew Elected ABC Chairman
Amit Mathew, Resident Editor and Director of Malayala Manorama, has been unanimously elected as Chairman of Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) for 2014-15. Shashidhar Sinha, CEO-India, IPG Mediabrands, representing Advertising Agencies on the Council, has been unanimously elected as Deputy Chairman.

15. Third India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Commission meet held in New Delhi
Who: Third India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Commission meet
Where: New Delhi
What: held
When: 20 September 2014
 
The third India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Commission (JCC) meet was held in New Delhi on 20 September 2014. The third JCC was co-chaired by Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Bangladeshi counterpart Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali.

The meeting focused on review of progress of initiatives in various sectors of the relationship. It also focused on identifying the thrust areas to give directions for further growth of the bilateral partnership.

Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali during his visit to New Delhi also met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Pranab Mukherjee. During his meet with Modi, he extended invitation of Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to visit Bangladesh. In response to which, Modi said that he is looking forward to visit the country at the earliest and also welcome Sheikh Hasina in India.

The Prime Ministers of the two countries will have their first bilateral interaction on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) meet later in September 2014.

India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Commission
The Joint Consultative Commission was constituted under the Framework Agreement on Cooperation for Development. The agreement was signed during the visit of former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh to Bangladesh in September 2011. The first and second meeting of the JCC was held in New Delhi in May 2012 and in Dhaka in February 2013, respectively.

16. UN Secretary-General announced to establish UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response 

Who: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
What: launched the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response
When: 20 September 2014

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on 20 September 2014 announced to establish the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER) in New York. He declared Ebola outbreak in West Africa a threat to peace and security.

The announcement came following the unanimous adoption of a key resolution by the 193-Member UN Security Council on measures to contain and combat the virus (document A/69/L.2).

Ban Ki-moon instructed the advance teams to head to Ghana, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone in West Africa by 22 September 2014 for carrying out first-of-its-kind operations. UN System Senior Coordinator for Ebola Dr. David Nabarro will provide strategic guidance to the Mission.

United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER)
The Mission's initial level is a major step in this expanding effort to tackle the greatest peacetime challenge that the United Nations and its agencies have ever faced. The hub of the Mission will be located in Accra, Ghana.

The Mission will provide the operational framework and unity of purpose to ensure the rapid, effective and coherent action necessary to treat the infected, ensure essential services, preserve stability and prevent its spread to countries which are currently unaffected.

The Mission will rely on the support of the entire UN system in particular the critical technical expertise of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Moreover, the mission will immediately begin to pull together the assets from the relevant agencies and will work closely with the Governments in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

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