In this week's news from outside the world, in the shadow of Joe Biden’s inauguration as the 46th president of the United States, the Senate is set to put his predecessor Donald Trump on trial for high crimes and misdemeanors — potentially barring him from holding federal office ever again.
Trump becomes the first President in US history to be impeached twice
- After vice President Mike Pence refused to act under the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office after the Capitol Hill riots, the Democrats moved for impeachment of the President in the House of Representatives on 13th January.
- Speaker Nancy Pelosi called the insurrectionists domestic terrorists and said, “And we know that the president of the United States incited this insurrection, this armed rebellion, against our common country. He must go. He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love.”
- The House Minority leader Kevin McCathy questioned the procedural haste of the impeachment and said it will not set the right example for future. He added that Trump ‘bears responsibility' for the violence at the Capitol but he won’t vote to impeach him.
- The House voted in favour of the impeachment 232:197
- Ten Republicans broke ranks and voted with the Democrats on the impeachment.
India Nepal Joint Commission meeting
- India and Nepal held the sixth round of JCM on 15th January.
- Foreign Minister Pradeep Gyawali travelled to New Delhi and held a separate one-on-one meeting with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar before the JCM.
- Both sides discussed several areas of cooperation including in the areas of connectivity, economy and trade, power, oil and gas, water resources, political and security issues, border management, development partnership, tourism, culture, education and capacity building.
- India ruled out discussing the boundary issue as it said there is a separate mechanism for the same.
- This was the first high-level visit from Nepal after trhe recent friction between the two sides over the revised map issued by Nepal that included three India territories of Limpiyadhura, Kalapani and Lipulekh
- However, the Foreign Minister was not given time for a call on with PM Narendra Modi
Navalany returns to Moscow
- Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny returned to Russia from Germany on Sunday.
- He was detained right after landing in Moscow.
- His move to return to Russia was lauded by many as courageous by many though others expressed concerns for his safety.
- Navalny had survived a poison attack by a nerve agent, Novichok, which he alleges was done at the behest of the Russian President Vladimir Putin himself.
- He suffered the poison attack in a flight over Serbia and was then rushed to Germany in an air ambulance in coma for treatment in August last year.
- Calls for his release were made by Western nations have been dismissed by Kremlin.
China builds village near border with India in Arunachal Pradesh
- Satellite imagery captured shows China has built a 101-house village in the Upper Subansiri region of Arunachal Pradesh
- According to BJP MP from Arunachal Pradesh, Tapir Gao, this is a disputed area and was claimed by China in 1959 but he did admit that the images being shown on TV are correct.
- MEA released a statement saying – “China has undertaken such infrastructure construction activity in the past several years. In response, our Government too has stepped up border infrastructure including the construction of roads, bridges etc, which has provided much needed connectivity to the local population along the border… Government keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on India's security and takes all the necessary measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
- Listen to the podcast with Prof SD Muni, Professor Emeritus JNU and former Indian ambassador and special envoy on what this new Chinese move could mean
India's COVID goodwill diplomacy
- India will start its vaccine supply goodwill gesture from 20th January.
- 2 million free of cost vaccines to reach Bangladesh.
- These will be Covishield vaccines from the Serum Institute of India.
- The future deals will be commercial between SII and Beximco Pharmaceuticals of Bangladesh.
- India had made a specific commitment to Bangladesh last year.
- India has also made a commitment to neighbouring country Nepal.