[Prelims Spotlight]Important Summits, Conventions and Declarations (Part 1)

1.RAMSAR Convention on Wetlands

Brief Intro

  • The Convention was adopted in the Iranian city of Ramsar in 1971 and came into force in 1975 after UNESCO, the Convention’s depositary received the instruments of accession from the countries.
  • The RAMSAR Secretariat is based at the headquarters of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in Gland, Switzerland.
  • World Wetlands Day is celebrated on February 2nd.

Key Objectives-

  • An intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources.

Year-1971

Place – Ramasar

Key Terms-The Montreux Record – a register of wetland sites on the List of Wetlands of International Importance where changes in ecological character are of concern. It is maintained as part of the Ramsar List.

India specific – India currently has 27 sites designated as Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Sites).

2.The World Heritage Convention

Brief Intro

The Convention recognizes the way in which people interact with nature, and the fundamental need to preserve the balance between the two.

Key Objectives-

The Convention defines the kind of natural or cultural sites which can be considered for inscription on the World Heritage List under UNESCO

Year-1972

3.Stockholm Conference

Brief Intro

Stockholm Declaration contains 26 principles. These principles provide the basis of an International Policy for the Protection and improvement of the environment.

Key Point-The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has been established by the UNGA in pursuance of the Stockholm Conference.

Year-1972

4.CITES

Brief Intro

To ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten the survival of the species in the wild, and it accords varying degrees of protection to more than 35,000 species of animals and plants.

Key Objectives-

  • It is a multilateral treaty drafted as a result of a resolution adopted in 1963 at a meeting of members of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
  • Although CITES is legally binding on the Parties – in other words they have to implement the Convention – it does not take the place of national laws.

India Specific –

The Government of India signed the Convention in July 1976, which was ratified in October 1976

5.Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage (CSC)

Brief Intro

Seeks to establish a uniform global legal regime for compensation to victims in the unlikely event of a nuclear accident. It was adopted on 12 September 1997. It can enter into force after ratification by at least 5 countries having minimum of 400,000 units of installed nuclear capacity.

Key Objectives-

  • It provides a uniform framework for channelling liability and providing speedy compensation after the nuclear accident.
  • Seeks to encourage regional and global co-operation to promote a higher level of nuclear safety in accordance with the principles of international partnership and solidarity.
  • All states are free to participate in it regardless of their presence of nuclear installations on their territories or involvement in existing nuclear liability conventions.
  • It has been framed in consistent with the principles of Vienna Convention on Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage (1963) and the Paris Convention on Third Party Liability in the Field of Nuclear Energy (1960).

India Specific –

India has ratified Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage (CSC), 1997 which sets parameters on a nuclear operator’s financial liability..

6.Nuclear security summit

Brief Intro

The Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) is a world summit, aimed at preventing nuclear terrorism around the globe. The first summit was held in Washington, D.C., United States, on April 12–13, 2010. The second summit was held in Seoul, South Korea, in 2012. The third summit was held in The Hague, Netherlands, on March 24–25, 2014. The fourth summit was held in Washington, D.C. on March 31–April 1, 2016.

Key Objectives-

Aimed at preventing nuclear terrorism around the globe.

India specific-

Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended the NSS 2016 in Washington

7.Ashgabat Agreement

Brief Intro

Ashgabat Agreement, is an international transport and transit corridor facilitating transportation of goods between Central Asia and the Persian Gulf.

Key Objectives-

  • The transit agreement provides for a transit corridor across Central Asia and the Middle East through the continuous landmass between Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Iran before reaching the Persian Gulf and into Oman.
  • The objective of this agreement is to enhance connectivity within Eurasian region and synchronize it with other transport corridors within that region including the International North–South Transport Corridor (INSTC).

8.The Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA)

Brief Intro

The Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) is an inter-governmental forum for enhancing cooperation towards promoting peace, security and stability in Asia.

Key Objectives-

It is a forum based on the recognition that there is close link between peace, security and stability in Asia and in the rest of the world.enhancing cooperation towards promoting peace, security and stability in Asia.

India Specific-

India is a member of CICA

9.Beijing declaration

Brief Intro

The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (BPfA) is an international declaration of women’s rights set up at the UN’s landmark Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing in 1995.

Key Objectives-

  • The BPfA covers 12 key critical matters of concern and areas for action including women and poverty, violence against women and access to power and decision- making.
  • It was supported by 189 countries, including the UK, at the 1995 World Conference.gender equality and the empowerment of all women, everywhere.1995.
  • It was the outcome of The Fourth World Conference on Women: Action for Equality, Development and Peace convened by UN.

12.The World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC)

Brief Intro

The World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) is a treaty adopted by the 56th World Health Assembly held in Geneva,Switzerland on 21 May 2003.

Key Objectives-

  • It became the first World Health Organization treaty adopted under article 19 of the WHO constitution.To protect present and future generations from the devastating health, social, environmental and economic consequences of tobacco consumption and exposure to tobacco smoke” by enacting a set of universal standards stating the dangers of tobacco and limiting its use in all forms worldwide.
  • The FCTC established two principal bodies to oversee the functioning of the treaty: the Conference of the parties and the permanent Secretariat. In addition, there are over 50 different intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations who are official observers to the Conference of the Parties.

India Specific-

India has hosted 7th Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC).

10.G-7

Brief Intro

  • The Group of Seven (G7) is an informal bloc of industrialized democracies—Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States—that meets annually to discuss issues such as global economic governance, international security, and energy policy.
  • Russia belonged to the forum from 1998 through 2014—then the Group of Eight (G8)—but was suspended after its annexation of Crimea in March of that year.

11.G-20

Brief Intro– It was started in 1999 as a meeting of Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors in the aftermath of the Southeast Asian (Tiger economies) financial crisis.

Key Objectives-

  • The Group of Twenty (G20) is the premier forum for its members’ international economic cooperation and decision-making.
  • It is deliberating forum for the governments and central bank governors from 20 major economies on economic issues and other important development challenges.
  • In 2008, the first G20 Leaders’ Summit was held in Washington DC, US. The group had played a key role in responding to the global financial crisis. It comprises total 19 countries plus the European Union (EU), representing 85% of global GDP, 80% of international trade, 65% of world’s population. Its members include Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, India, France, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Turkey, South Africa, UK, US and EU. 4.The 2016 summit was held in Hangzhou China.
  • It was established for studying, reviewing, and promoting high-level discussion of policy issues pertaining to the promotion of international financial stability.

India Specific-

India is a founding member of G-20

12.International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

Brief Intro

It is a comprehensive international agreement in harmony with the Convention on Biological Diversity, which aims at guaranteeing food security through the conservation, exchange and sustainable use of the world’s plant genetic resources for food and agriculture (PGRFA), as well as the fair and equitable benefit sharing arising from its use.

Key Objectives-

It also recognises Farmers’ Rights, subject to national laws to

a) the protection of traditional knowledge relevant to plant genetic resources for food and agriculture;

b) the right to equitably participate in sharing benefits arising from the utilisation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture;

c) the right to participate in making decisions, at the national level, on matters related to the conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

It is a comprehensive international agreement in harmony with the Convention on Biological Diversity.

India Specific-

India has signed the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.

13.Marrakesh treaty

Brief Intro

  • The treaty requires signatories to introduce national law provisions that facilitates the availability of published works in formats like Braille that are accessible to the blind and allow their exchange across borders by organizations working for the visually impaired.

Key Objectives-

  • The pact will help import of accessible format copies from the member countries by the Indian authorized entities such as educational institutions, libraries and other institutions working for the welfare of the visually impaired.
  • The treaty will also ease translation of imported accessible format copies and export of accessible format copies in Indian languages.To create a set of mandatory limitations and exceptions for the benefit of the blind, visually impaired and otherwise print disabled (VIPs).

14.London Declaration

Brief Intro

  • The London Declaration on Neglected Tropical Diseases is a collaborative disease eradication programme launched on 30 January 2012 in London.
  • It was inspired by the World Health Organization 2020 roadmap to eradicate or negate transmission for neglected tropical diseases.Officials from WHO, the World Bank, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the world’s 13 leading pharmaceutical companies, and government representatives from US, UK, United Arab Emirate, Bangladesh, Brazil, Mozambique and Tanzania participated in a joint meeting at the Royal College of Physicians to launch this project.

15.Declaration of Montreal

Brief Intro

The Declaration of Montreal on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Human Rights is a document adopted in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on July 29, 2006, by the International Conference on LGBT Human Rights which formed part of the first World Outgames.

Key Objectives-

  • The Declaration outlines a number of rights and freedoms pertaining to LGBT and intersex people that it is proposed be universally guaranteed.
  • It encompasses all aspects of human rights, from the guarantee of fundamental freedoms to the prevention of discrimination against LGBT people in healthcare, education and immigration.
  • The Declaration also addresses various issues that impinge on the global promotion of LGBT rights and intersex human rights.

16. Istanbul Convention

Brief Intro

  • The Istanbul Convention is the first legally-binding instrument which “creates a comprehensive legal framework and approach to combat violence against women” and is focussed on preventing domestic violence, protecting victims and prosecuting accused offenders. The convention aims at prevention of violence, victim protection and “to end with the impunity of perpetrators.
  • The Council of Europe.Only European countries have signed this convention.

17.vienna convention on diplomatic relations

Brief Intro

It is a treaty that came into force in 1964 2.It lays out the rules and regulations for diplomatic relations between countries as well as the various privileges that diplomats and diplomatic missions enjoy.

Key Objectives-

  • One of these privileges is legal immunity for diplomats so that they don’t have to face prosecution as per their host country’s laws.
  • The Vienna Convention classifies diplomats according to their posting in the embassy, consular or international organisations such as the UN. A nation has only one embassy per foreign country, usually in the capital, but may have multiple consulate offices, generally in locations where many of its citizens live or visit.
  • Diplomats posted in an embassy get immunity, along with his or her family members. While diplomats posted in consulates too get immunity, they can be prosecuted in case of serious crimes, that is, when a warrant is issued.
  • Besides, their families don’t share that immunity.It has been ratified by 187 countries, including India.

18.Jaipur Summit

Brief Intro

  • The Forum for India–Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) was launched during Hon’ble Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi’s visit to Fiji in November 2014.
  • FIPIC includes 14 of the island countries – Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.
  • The second summit of the Forum for India Pacific Cooperation (FIPIC-2) in Jaipur on 21-22 August 2015 has made significant progress in strengthening India’s engagement with the 14 Pacific Island countries. Increase Cooperation Between India and 14 Pacific Countries.

Key Objectives-

  • Though these countries are relatively small in land area and distant from India, many have large exclusive economic zones (EEZs), and offer promising possibilities for fruitful cooperation.
  • India’s focus has largely been on the Indian Ocean where it has sought to play a major role and protect its strategic and commercial interests. The FIPIC initiative marks a serious effort to expand India’s engagement in the Pacific region.
  • At this moment, total annual trade of about $300 million between the Indian and Pacific Island countries, where as exports are around $200 million and imports are around $100 million.

19.NPT

Brief Intro

The NPT is a landmark international treaty whose objective is to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and weapons technology, to promote cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and to further the goal of achieving nuclear disarmament and general and complete disarmament.

Key Objectives-

  • The Treaty represents the only binding commitment in a multilateral treaty to the goal of disarmament by the nuclear-weapon States. Opened for signature in 1968, the Treaty entered into force in 1970.
  • To prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and weapons technology, to promote cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, and to further the goal of achieving nuclear disarmament and general and complete disarmament.

India Specific-

India has not signed the treaty as India argues that the NPT creates a club of “nuclear haves” and a larger group of “nuclear have-nots” by restricting the legal possession of nuclear weapons to those states that tested them before 1967, but the treaty never explains on what ethical grounds such a distinction is valid.

20.CTBT

Brief Intro

  • The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) is a multilateral treaty that bans all nuclear explosions, for both civilian and military purposes, in all environments.
  • It was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 September 1996 but has not entered into force as eight specific states have not ratified the treaty. Nuclear weapon free
  • The treaty thus awaits signature and ratification from India, Pakistan, and North Korea and in addition requires the United States, China, Israel, Iran and Egypt (which have already signed) to formally ratify it.

India Specific-

Even though it is yet to sign the CTBT, India has supported the treaty’s basic principle of banning nuclear explosions by declaring a unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing. India’s expressed support to the essential requirement of the treaty makes it a de facto member of the CTBT.

 

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Pragya Tripathi
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India has 27 ramsar sites.Latest one is Indian Sundarbans.Please update.Thanks.