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30 September 2016, National & International Affairs

NATIONAL Sep 30

Sep 30: The government firmly rejected India`s claim of carrying out surgical strikes across the LoC.

Sep 30: USAID and five Pakistani banks — HBL, MCB, Faysal Bank, Meezan Bank and JS Bank signed 15-year partnership agreement to provide up to a 50% percent guarantee for loans made for clean energy projects.

Sep 30: The Ministry of Interior prepared a list of 285 seminaries receiving foreign funding.

Sep 30: The Indian Army asked for the release of its captured soldier Chandu Babulal Chohan of 37 Rashtriya Rifles.

Sep 30: Major General Sarfraz Sattar was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant General.

Profile

Commissioned in 1984, Lt General Sattar belongs to the armed corps and 70th Pakistan Military Academy Long Course.

He is currently commanding an infantry division at Sialkot.

Sattar has previously served as the Director General of Military Intelligence.

He was also appointed as military attaché in to India at one point in his service.

Sep 30: The KP government appointed Azmat Hanif Orkazai as the Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Right to Information Commission for a period of three years.

INTERNATIONAL

Sep 30: Israel paid Turkey $20 million in compensation for Gaza flotilla raid of 2010.

Sep 30: Europe`s pioneering Rosetta spacecraft concluded a 12-year odyssey with a controlled crash-landing onto the comet it has orbited and probed for two years.

What Rosetta mission uncovered

After arriving in orbit around comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, it launched Philae, a separate lander, which itself had 10 hi-tech gadgets, including cameras, X-ray scans, radio wave probes and a drill that never deployed.

What the mission found:

Scientists were flabbergasted to observe through Rosetta’s cameras that 67P resembled a rubber bath duck with a distinct “body” and “head”, and a crack through its “neck”.

Some scientists have since postulated that this shape was not created by erosion, but a low-velocity impact billions of years ago between two objects which fused.

This all suggests the comet was formed in a young, outer part of our Solar System that was much less densely packed with bodies than previously thought.

This affects our understanding of planetary formation, thought to have happened when ice and dust debris, swirling around in a proto-planetary disk around an infant Sun, collided and stuck together, growing bigger and bigger over time.

Comet’s surface

The comet’s surface was less “fluffy” and much harder than expected, which contributed to Philae bouncing several times after its harpoons failed to fire on landing.

The comet had much less water ice than thought, was littered with pebbles and rocks ranging in size from a few centimetres across to five metres, and pocked with deep craters. The surface is rendered super-dark and non-reflective by a thin layer of dust.

Oxygen molecules

Scientists were astonished to find oxygen molecules in the gassy halo around the comet, and said they appeared to be older than our Solar System.

Scientific models had previously calculated that oxygen as a molecular compound on its own would not have existed at the time the comet was formed, as it would have bonded with other elements like hydrogen.

So, how the comet got its oxygen remains a mystery.

67P has organic molecules, many different ones — including amino acids, which are the building blocks of life as we know it.

This discovery supports the hypothesis that comets may very well have helped spark life on Earth by delivering organic materials when they slammed into a young planet that was basically molten iron. Water, on the other hand, is unlikely to have come from comets of 67P’s type, the mission found.

Water of different ‘flavour’

The water on Rosetta is of a very different “flavour” than that on our planet, with three times more deuterium, a heavy hydrogen isotope.

Rosetta scientists concluded it probably smells like a noxious mix of rotten eggs, horse urine, alcohol and bitter almonds.

Sep 30: World’s deepest underwater cave was found in the Czech Republic. It is the world’s deepest flooded fissure, going at least 404 metres (1,325 feet) deep.

Sep 30: Bulgaria outlawed face-covering Islamic veils in public.

Sep 30: For the first time, the world’s highest criminal court — the International Criminal Court in The Hague — ruled that destroying cultural antiquities is a war crime.

Sep 30: EU environment ministers agreed to fast-track the ratification of the landmark Paris agreement on climate change.

Fast Facts

The 28 EU member nations together account for close to 12% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

The addition of EU will take the cumulative emissions of ratifying parties of the agreement well beyond the 55% minimum required for the treaty to enter into force.

Together with the EU, total global GHG emissions covered by ratifying parties will make the treaty ready to enter into force.

Sep 30: The UN Human Rights Council agreed to set up a commission of inquiry to identify perpetrators of alleged international crimes in Burundi.

About UNHRC

The UNHRC is the successor to the UN Commission on Human Rights, and is a subsidiary body of the UN General Assembly.

The UNGA established the UNHRC by adopting a resolution on 15 March 2006.

The UNGA elects the members who occupy the UNHRC’s 47 seats.

The seat distribution is: Africa (13) Asia (13), Eastern Europe (6), Latin America and the Caribbean (8), and Western European and Others Group (7).

The term of each seat is three years, and no member may occupy a seat for more than two consecutive terms.

The UNHRC holds regular sessions three times a year, in March, June, and September.

Current President: Luis Alfonso de Alba (Mexico)

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