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The Hindu Editorial

26-September-2023

Daily Current Affairs For UPSC ,The Hindu Editorial Summary

1. On Azerbaijan’s recapture of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Topic: GS2 – International events

Context:

  • Azerbaijan swiftly recaptured Nagorno-Karabakh, an Armenian-populated enclave, revealing shifting power dynamics in the Caucasus region.

Background of the conflict:

  • The conflict traces back to the Soviet Union’s dissolution, with the majority Armenian-Christian population voting to break away from Shia-majority Azerbaijan.
  • Armenian separatists, supported by Armenia, controlled Nagorno-Karabakh until 2020 when Azerbaijan, backed by Turkey, fought Armenia (a Russian treaty ally) and reclaimed much of the territory.

Recent Developments:

  • Russia brokered a ceasefire but did not provide significant assistance to Armenia, leaving Stepanakert in local hands. However, the peace did not hold.
  • Azerbaijan blockaded the Lachin Corridor, worsening economic conditions in Nagorno-Karabakh and facing international criticism.
  • Azerbaijan attacked Stepanakert, prompting separatists to surrender full control to Baku.

Geopolitical Factors:

  • Two key geopolitical factors benefited Azerbaijan: Turkey’s support to expand its role in the Caucasus and Russia’s focus on its Ukraine front, weakening its influence in the region.

Challenges and Concerns:

  • While Nagorno-Karabakh is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, historical mistrust and violence persist among Armenians in the region.
  • Azerbaijan’s takeover has led to a refugee crisis in Armenia, and allegations of genocidal crimes have emerged.
  • Azerbaijan’s success hinges on its ability to ensure equal rights and autonomy for the Armenian population in Nagorno-Karabakh, as failure to do so could result in prolonged resistance and an unresolved conflict.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/war-in-caucasus-on-azerbaijans-recapture-of-nagorno-karabakh/article67344930.ece

2. Children, a key yet missed demographic in AI regulation

Topic: GS3 – artificial intelligence.

AI Global Summit and GPAI Leadership:

  • India is set to host the first-ever global summit on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in October.
  • India, as the Chair of the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI), will also host the GPAI global summit in December.
  • These events highlight the strategic importance of AI, projected to contribute $500 billion to India’s economy by 2025, accounting for 10% of the GDP. 

Prime Minister’s Call for Ethical AI Framework:

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for a global ethical framework for AI expansion.
  • India, with its vast data potential, can set an example for ethical AI policy in the Global South.

Challenges in Regulating AI for Children and Adolescents:

  • The governance challenge lies in regulating AI to reduce issues of addiction, mental health, safety, and other threats faced by children and adolescents.
  • AI-based digital services not designed for children are still accessed by them, posing risks like misinformation, cyberbullying, and body image issues.
  • Young people also face indirect effects of their families’ online activities, such as deep fake threats.
  • India’s diverse population with intersectional identities across gender, caste, religion, and more raises concerns about AI perpetuating real-world biases and inequities in the digital realm.

Misalignment of Data Protection Law:

  • India’s data protection law misaligns with digital realities regarding children, placing an excessive burden on parents and hampering personalization.
  • The law’s default ban on tracking children’s data can deprive them of personalized benefits.

International Best Practices and UNICEF Guidance:

  • International best practices can guide Indian regulation to establish standards promoting children’s well-being, inclusion, fairness, safety, transparency, and accountability.
  • UNICEF’s guidance for policymakers on AI and children, based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, provides valuable principles.

Age-Appropriate Design Code:

  • California’s Age Appropriate Design Code Act serves as a template for adapting regulation to different developmental stages of children.
  • It emphasizes transparency, harm assessment, and age-appropriate language for user information.

Incorporating Children’s Perspectives:

  • Establishing mechanisms for regular dialogue with children will help incorporate their inputs into AI regulation.
  • Institutions like Australia’s Online Safety Youth Advisory Council can serve as models to make regulation responsive to threats faced by young people
  • Regulation should avoid rigid prescriptions and instead embrace standards, strong institutions, and best practices to foster openness, trust, and accountability.

Conclusion:

  • As India moves towards new laws to regulate internet harms and seeks to lead in global AI regulation, the interests of young citizens should be a primary focus.

Mains Question: What are the key factors driving India’s increasing emphasis on Artificial Intelligence (AI) regulation. And what challenges does the country face in ensuring ethical AI deployment.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/children-a-key-yet-missed-demographic-in-ai-regulation/article67345675.ece

3. G-20 diplomacy and a shifting world order

Topic: GS2 – International events

Context:

  • The article discusses India’s successful hosting of the G-20 summit, achieving consensus on various issues, but highlights caution due to evolving global power dynamics and rival blocs. 

G-20 Summit Success:

  • India hosted the G-20 meeting in Delhi, achieving a consensus Declaration on numerous issues.
  • The Declaration reflected global community hopes and endorsed PM Narendra Modi’s vision of “One Earth, One Family, One Future.”

Consensus on Ukraine Conflict:

  • The G-20 achieved consensus on the Ukraine conflict by not pointing fingers at Russia for its role.
  • This differs from the Bali Declaration of 2022, which condemned Russia for its aggression in Ukraine.
  • Russia and China praised the New Delhi Declaration, contrary to their criticism of the Bali Declaration.

India’s Ascendancy and Caution:

  • India’s role in the G-20 signifies its increased importance on the global stage.
  • India should remain cautious due to the complex global situation, particularly concerning China.

China’s Concerns:

  • China welcomed the Delhi Declaration but emphasized that the G-20 should focus on economic cooperation and not geopolitical and security issues.
  • China expressed concerns about the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor Plan being used for geopolitical purposes.

Changing G-20 Role:

  • The G-20’s role has shifted from addressing economic crises to focusing on global political conflicts.
  • Analysts see the G-20 as a battleground for two opposing blocs (West vs. China-Russia) vying for global supremacy.

Fading Non-Alignment:

  • The proliferation of security agreements and new alignments is diminishing the concept of non-alignment.
  • The world faces an uncertain future as rival camps with divergent visions of the international order strengthen.

Conclusion:

  • In conclusion, while India’s hosting of the G-20 summit showcased diplomatic achievements, it must exercise caution amid evolving geopolitical tensions and the resurgence of rival blocs in global politics.

Mains Question: Discuss the evolving role of India in global diplomacy and the challenges it faces in navigating changing geopolitical dynamics.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/g-20-diplomacy-and-a-shifting-world-order/article67345820.ece

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