In early July 2020, An extract of the final award of the ad-hoc tribunal constituted to settle disputes related to the United Nations Convention for the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) regarding Italian marines Case between India and Italy was published by the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA). It has ordered to cease all criminal proceedings against the two Italian Soldiers in Indian courtrooms by rejecting India’s contention that the soldiers, who were accused of killing Indian fishermen, could be trialled in Indian courts. Following the order, Centre has made a plea in Supreme Court seeking the closure of cases against the Italian soldiers. But the Supreme Court has refused to pass any such order without hearing victims’ kin and getting them paid the compensation.
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR) had filed an intervention application in the Supreme Court over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA). The CAA, which was passed by the Indian Parliament in December, aims to hasten citizenship for persecuted minorities from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan, leaving out the possibility of India giving citizenship to persecuted Muslims from these countries. Fears that this Act, along with plans to create a National Register of Citizens, could strip Indian Muslims of their citizenship have led to protests across the country. In this context, the UNHCHR seeks to intervene as amicus curiae (third party) in the petitions against CAA that is pending before the apex court.
Recently, the Indian Air Force (IAF) Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman who was arrested by the Pakistani rangers was returned to India. Pakistan claimed that Abhinandan was set free as a peace gesture. However, India maintained that Pakistan is obliged to release the pilot under the Geneva Conventions. It is imperative in this context to understand the provisions in Geneva Conventions on the treatment of prisoners of war (PoWs).
This article explains the following in an analytical manner with a mindmap for better understanding and quick revision.
- What is the issue?
- What are the Geneva Conventions?
- Is the present conflict comes from the Geneva Conventions?
- What is prohibited under the convention?
- What are the rights enjoyed by a Prisoner of War under the convention?
- What about the release of prisoners?
Recently India’s decades long effort to get the full membership of the 2nd largest intergovernmental group – the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) got the huge boost when it attended the OIC’s 46th session of council of foreign ministers meeting at Abu Dhabi as a guest of honour on the invitation by the host country – United Arab Emirates (UAE).It has to be noted that, India has never been invited to the OIC before and the latest development comes at a time when the India-Pakistan tension is running high, is being seen as a diplomatic success.