22 June 2024 CNA
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A. GS 1 Related
B. GS 2 Related
1. Testing times
C. GS 3 Related
D. GS 4 Related
E. Editorials
1. A progressive Indian policy on Myanmar outlined
2. New Cold War
F. Prelims Facts
1. Patent filings credit Bharat Biotech as ‘inventor’ of Covaxin, omit ICMR
2. Armenia becomes the latest nation to recognise Palestine
G. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions
H. UPSC Mains Practice Questions
FIP Magazine

2. New Cold War

Syllabus: GS-2, Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests.

Mains: Russian and North Korean alliance, a shift in the global order

Context:​ The recent security pact between Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un marks a significant geopolitical development. This alliance echoes the Cold War era and signals a shift in the global order, particularly in East Asia. Both nations, facing sanctions and isolated by the West, have found mutual strategic benefit in deepening their ties.


Security Pact Details:

  • Mutual assistance pledge between Russia and North Korea in case of aggression.
  • Revival of an old alliance to counter the Western-led global order.

Geopolitical Context:

  • Russia’s need for ammunition and ballistic missiles due to the prolonged Ukraine war.
  • North Korea’s opportunity to strengthen its defense sector with Russian technology.

Implications of the Pact:

  • North Korea supplied ammunition to Russia, while Russia provided food, fuel, and possibly defense technologies.
  • Elevation of Russia-North Korea ties to a de facto alliance.


Impact on Global Order:

  • Strengthened axis of nations opposed to the West.
  • Potential to expedite changes in the global power structure.

Regional Consequences:

  • Diminished prospects for North Korea’s denuclearization.
  • Deterioration of Russia’s relationships with Japan and South Korea.

Strengthening of U.S. Alliances:

  • Reinforcement of the tripartite partnership among Japan, South Korea, and the U.S.
  • The emergence of a new Cold War-like divide between great powers.


Strategic Diplomatic Engagement:

  • The U.S. and its allies should engage in robust diplomatic efforts to address the security concerns of Northeast Asia.
  • Diplomatic channels should be kept open with Russia and North Korea to mitigate potential escalations.

Strengthening Regional Security Alliances:

  • Enhance military and economic cooperation among the U.S., Japan, and South Korea.
  • Conduct joint military exercises and increase intelligence sharing to deter aggression.

Economic and Humanitarian Strategies:

  • Implement targeted economic sanctions that minimize humanitarian impact while exerting pressure on the regimes.
  • Support regional development programs to stabilize neighbouring countries and reduce their dependence on adversarial powers.

Promoting Multilateral Forums:

  • Utilize international platforms like the United Nations to address and de-escalate tensions.
  • Encourage dialogue and conflict resolution through multilateral diplomacy.

Nut Graf: The Russia-North Korea security pact represents a significant development in the evolving global order, reminiscent of Cold War alliances. This strategic partnership challenges the U.S. and its allies, necessitating a recalibration of their approach in East Asia.

F. Prelims Facts

1. Rutte seals NATO top job after lone rival drops out

Context: India’s first indigenously developed coronavirus vaccine, Covaxin, emerged from a joint collaboration between the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL). 

  • Public records indicate that intellectual property (IP) rights are jointly shared. 
  • However, patent filings by BBIL in India, the United States, and Europe credit only BBIL personnel as inventors, raising questions about the exclusion of ICMR scientists.


Discrepancy in Patent Filings:

  • BBIL’s patent filings list only its scientists as inventors, excluding ICMR personnel.
  • This contradicts the Union Health Ministry’s statement that IP rights are jointly owned by ICMR and BBIL.

Details of Collaboration:

  • The ICMR provided the virus strain for vaccine development.
  • BBIL developed the final vaccine formulation and received a non-exclusive license to commercialize the product.
  • ICMR was to receive a 5% royalty from net sales.

Financial Contributions:

  • ICMR, specifically its National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune, spent ₹35 crore on Covaxin development.
  • Phase-3 clinical trials funded by ICMR cost ₹35 crore and involved 25,800 participants at 25 locations.

Royalty and IP Rights:

  • As of January 2022, ICMR received ₹171 crore as royalty.
  • Patent filings did not mention ICMR despite previous collaborations listing scientists from all institutions.


Intellectual Property and Recognition:

  • Proper credit for scientific contributions is essential for transparency and recognition.
  • Discrepancies can affect trust between public institutions and private companies.

Financial Implications:

  • Joint ownership of IP rights has significant financial implications, including royalties and potential future revenues.
  • Ensuring accurate IP ownership affects funding allocations and rewards for involved entities.

Policy and Legal Concerns:

  • Misalignment between public statements and patent filings can lead to legal disputes.
  • It highlights the need for clear, enforceable agreements in public-private partnerships.

Impact on Future Collaborations:

  • Trust issues arising from such discrepancies can deter future collaborations between public research bodies and private companies.
  • Transparent practices are essential for fostering cooperative research and development efforts.

2. Armenia becomes the latest nation to recognise Palestine

Context: Armenia recently announced its recognition of the State of Palestine amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. This move aligns Armenia with several European nations and reflects its commitment to international law and peace in the Middle East.


Recognition of Palestine:

  • Armenia officially recognizes the State of Palestine.
  • Joins Spain, Ireland, and Norway, which recognized Palestine in late May.

Criticism of Military Conduct:

  • Armenia criticizes Israel’s military actions in Gaza, where over 37,000 people have been killed.
  • Condemns Hamas for kidnapping civilians and calls for their release.

Diplomatic Tensions:

  • Israel’s Foreign Ministry summoned Armenia’s Ambassador for a “severe reprimand.”
  • Israeli authorities view the recognition of Palestine as “rewarding terrorism.”


International Relations:

  • Armenia’s recognition of Palestine highlights a growing trend among nations advocating for Palestinian statehood.
  • The move signifies Armenia’s alignment with countries advocating for peace and stability in the Middle East.

Impact on Israel-Armenia Relations:

  • Diplomatic tensions are likely to increase between Israel and Armenia.
  • Armenia’s stance may influence other nations to take similar steps, affecting Israel’s diplomatic landscape.

Regional Stability:

  • Recognition of Palestine is seen as a step towards peace by some nations.
  • Criticisms of both Israeli military actions and Hamas’s tactics reflect a balanced stance aiming for humanitarian considerations.

H. UPSC Prelims Practice Questions

Q1. Which among these ports of Myanmar were developed by India as a part of 
its SAGAR vision?
  1. Sittwe port
  2. Kyaukpyu port
  3. Port of Thilawa

Choose the correct answer from the code given below:

  1. 1 only
  2. 1 and 2 only
  3. 2 only
  4. 1, 2 and 3

Answer: a

Explanation: As part of India’s SAGAR Vision, India developed the Sittwe port in Myanmar’s Rakhine state to counter the Chinese-fronted Kyaukphyu port.

Q2. Consider the following statements with respect to Kamikaze drones:
  1. They are also called Switchblade drones.
  2. They are small unmanned aircrafts that are packed with explosives.

Which of these statements is/are correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both 1 and 2
  4. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: c

Explanation: Both the statements are correct. Kamikaze drones have the capability of going past traditional defences to strike their targets and also cost a fraction of what their larger counterparts do.

Q3. Consider the following statements with respect to the Indian Council of 
Medical Research (ICMR):
  1. It was formed in 1911 and was known as the Indian Research Fund Association (IRFA).
  2. The Government of India funds ICMR.
  3. The Prime Minister of India presides over the governing body of ICMR.

How many of these statements is/are correct?

  1. Only one
  2. Only two
  3. All three
  4. None

Answer: b

Explanation: Statement 3 is incorrect. The Union Health Minister of India presides over the governing body of ICMR.

Q4. Consider the following statements with respect to Armenia:
  1. It is a part of the Caucasus region.
  2. It is bordered by Turkey to the west, Georgia to the north and Azerbaijan to the east.
  3. It is a landlocked country.

How many of these statements is/are correct?

  1. Only one
  2. Only two
  3. All three
  4. None

Answer: c

Explanation: All three statements are correct.


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