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June 17, 2016    Reading Time: 2 minutes

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Sri Lanka to implement the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea. Image credit - Nightman1965 / depositphotos

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EU lifts ban on Sri Lankan fish exports

The EU has completely lifted its ban on Sri Lankan seafood exports, following a partial lift in April 2016.

The ban was imposed in January 2015 following claims of Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated fishing that resulted in a 40% loss of the revenue from Sri Lanka’s fish exports.

Turkey and Sri Lanka to sign MoU

Following a visit by the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, Sri Lanka and Turkey have agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will include the allocation of a credit line worth USD 350 million to strengthen economic cooperation between the two countries.

The Sri Lankan and Turkish Foreign Ministers, at a meeting held on 15 June, signed a MoU on diplomatic cooperation. Turkey has previously assisted Sri Lanka with a USD 300,000 housing project.

Sri Lanka to implement international maritime treaty

The Ministry of Ports and Shipping stated that Sri Lanka will begin implementing the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS).

According to the Director General of the Merchant Shipping Secretariat, Ajith Seneviratne, SOLAS will be implemented from 1 July. The convention will require that merchant ships meet the minimum standards of construction, equipment and operation compatible with the safety of their vessels.


US supports India’s membership to the Nuclear Suppliers Group

The US has urged governments of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to support India’s application at the NSG plenary to be held in Seoul, South Korea on 24 June 2016.

While a majority of the NSG’s 48 members support India’s entrance to the group, China, New Zealand, Ireland, Turkey, South Africa and Austria are opposed to it. US Secretary of State, John Kerry, has written a two-page letter to skeptical members of the NSG to ‘agree not to block consensus on Indian admission’.

Venezuelan asylum seekers in the US increase

Venezuela has become the second largest source of asylum seekers in the US. The US government’s Citizenship and Immigration Services has revealed that 1,345 applications were submitted by Venezuelan asylum seekers in March 2016, second only to Chinese asylum seekers, who submitted 1,441 applications that month.

The number of asylum seekers from Venezuela to the US increased significantly following the December 2015 congressional election, which resulted in the Democratic Unity coalition coming into power.

UN panel finds ISIS guilty of genocide

A UN panel of investigators has stated that the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) is guilty of committing genocide and other war crimes against the Yazidi religious minority in Syria and Iraq.

The UN investigation revealed that ISIS is engaged in a systematic campaign against the Yazidi community, which includes mass killings, erasing the Yazidi identity, and preventing reproduction. It further stated that ‘no other religious group in ISIS-controlled Syria and Iraq has been subject to such destruction’.

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