Focus: GS-II International relations

Why in news?

The European Union will restrict exports to Hong Kong of equipment that could be used for surveillance and repression after Beijing imposed a controversial new security law.


  • The bloc has expressed deep concerned over the new law, which critics say will severely curb Hong Kong’s longstanding autonomy and relative freedom.
  • But the EU has struggled to agree a united response to China, with member states deeply divided over whether to stand up to Beijing — a hugely important trading partner — or to try to cooperate with it.
  • France and Germany proposed the restriction on so-called “dual use” technology at a meeting of Foreign Ministers.
  • Along with the export restriction, the EU will also bring in measures to support the population of the former British colony by making it easier for them to travel to Europe through the granting of visas, scholarships and academic exchanges.

European Union

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Note: United Kingdom is not a part of the EU now.

  • The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of 27 member states that are located primarily in Europe.
  • The EU has developed an internal single market through a standardised system of laws that apply in all member states in those (Only those) matters where members have agreed to act as one.
  • A monetary union was established in 1999, coming into full force in 2002, and is composed of 19 EU member states which use the euro currency.
  • In January 2020, the United Kingdom became the first member state ever to leave the EU.

-Source: The Hindu

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