At the start of every month, the Global Observatory posts a list of key upcoming meetings and events that have implications for global affairs.
Aug 1: European treaty on violence against women comes into force, Europe
The first European treaty to specifically target violence against women and domestic violence, known as the Istanbul Convention, will come into force on August 1 following the 10th ratification by Andorra. The convention closes the gap in the protection of fundamental human rights of women by requiring state parties to prevent violence, protect victims, prosecute the perpetrators, and to co-ordinate any such measures through comprehensive policies. As it enters into force, the convention has so far been signed by 36 states, of which 13 have already ratified it.
Aug 2: Afghan President Karzai’s term scheduled to end, Kabul
On August 2, incumbent Afghan President Hamid Karzai is scheduled to step down after 13 years in power, even as an international audit of over 8 million votes to determine the winner in the presidential vote is still underway. Karzai has reportedly reiterated his intention to stick to the August 2 deadline, despite the fact that the auditing deal brokered by US Secretary of State John Kerry has been marred by both criticism and delays. Whether the audit will be completed by then, or whether Karzai will step down, are still open questions, but the date is expected to bring some new development to the impasse.
Aug 3-4: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visits Nepal, Kathmandu
India’s newly-elected Prime Minister Narendra Modi will pay an official visit to Nepal, marking the first official bilateral visit by an Indian prime minister to Kathmandu in 17 years. Modi’s visit will seek to strengthen ties with Nepal as part of a regional outreach strategy and, after June’s visit to Bhutan, it is his second official bilateral visit since he took office in May. Some sources suggest that India’s overture toward its neighbors is part of a strategy to counter China’s influence in the region. One of the primary issues the two heads of state are likely to discuss is Beijing’s role in Nepal. These same sources point to how Nepal’s strategic importance for India may have come under attack in light of China’s recent efforts to enlarge its strategic footprint there.