GS 2 A relationship under stress From the realpolitik point, even if the U.S. wants to limit Iranian influence, Saudi Arabia under MBS is not helping the cause. It lost the Syria war. Its intervention in Yemen drove the Houthis further into Iran’s embrace. Shielding witnesses A robust witness protection scheme will strengthen the criminal justice system Quick retreat French President Emmanuel Macron’s reforms programme could be at risk of losing steam in the wake of weeks of violent countrywide protests triggered by a proposed increase in the fuel tax. Is social media polarising society? While the democratisation of discourse that social media has brought about is undeniable and most welcome, we are getting trapped in narrower world views that are seeping into not only voter behaviour but everyday personal interactions. GS 3 Cabinet clears policy to double agri exports The Union Cabinet on Thursday approved the Agriculture Export Policy, aimed at increasing India’s exports to $60 billion by 2022 from the current $37 billion, Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu announced. ‘Air pollution cause of 1 in 8 deaths’ India, with 18% of the world’s population, has a disproportionately high 26% of the global premature deaths and disease burden due to air pollution. Moreover, one in eight deaths in India was attributable to air pollution in India in 2017, making it a leading risk factor for death. Still on the last chance saloon The Katowice climate meet must ensure that today’s children don’t inherit a planet heading to a catastrophe OPEC agrees to cut oil production The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) tentatively agreed an oil-output cut on Thursday but was waiting to hear from non-OPEC heavyweight Russia before deciding the exact volumes for a production reduction aimed at propping up crude prices, two sources from the group said. China to build 20,000 forest villages China will continue to enhance the ecological environment in villages across the country, bring the green coverage rate in rural areas to 30% and build 20,000 national forest villages by 2020, said Liu Dongsheng, Deputy Director of the China’s National Forestry and Grassland Administration.