Foreign policy news #1 / by Adam


1. The current UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon is tipped to become the next President of the Republic of Korea. The election process starts on 20th December 2017, with the next President taking office in 25th February 2018.


2. The next UN Secretary General will take office on 1st January 2017. Candidates from the five permanent countries are not considered for the role (UK, USA, China, Russia, France).

There are currently 9 candidates for this role including Portugal's former Prime Minister Antonio Guterres and Slovakia's Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčák. The election for the role will take place in October 2016.


3. The current India-Pakistan conflict on Kashmir has become more heated this year. Originating from a territorial dispute following the partition of India in 1947, recent violence has heightened from the killing of a Kashmir militant Burhan Wani in July 2016 by Indian security forces.


4. Russian planes are accused of bombing a UN aid convoy in Syria killing at least 20 people. After a ceasefire deal was brokered, the convoy carrying food and medicine was bombed en-route to Aleppo, one of the worst affected cities in Syria from the ongoing crisis.


5. Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's political future is in doubt as he pledges a referendum on Italy's constitutional reforms. If the referendum does not go his way, he will resign as the Prime Minister. The referendum takes place in November 2016.


6. South Africa's Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa announced in Parliament in September 2016 that the government released a new brand of government issued condoms called Max. Quoting from Cyril's speech in Parliament: "The Max condom is in response to what a number of people were saying, they were saying that the other condom that had been introduced by government did not smell so well and it made a noise whenever it was used"


7. Whistleblower Edward Snowden who leaked confidential information about the US National Security Agency is seeking a Presidential Pardon from President Obama. Snowden argues that the disclosure of the scale of surveillance by US and British intelligence agencies was in the service of the public good.


8. The current question for discussion in Germany's news is whether or not Angela Merkel will run again for her role of Chancellor of Germany in 2017. Her popularity has recently been in decline after 11 years in office due to her open-door stance on refugees. The election will start around September 2017.