08/30/2014SYRIA - PHILIPPINES Syria, Islamists attack Philippine contingent in Golan Heights: among them a priest The group of 75 peacekeepers have been blocked in the hills for few days by the al-Nusra Brigade. The rebels launched a direct attack this morning. The Military Ordinary of Manila says: "There is also a priest among the peacekeepers, sent to take care of the spiritual needs of the troops. Let us pray for all of them". Damascus (AsiaNews) - The Syrian al-Nusra Brigade rebels
have launched a direct attack against the contingent of 75 Philippine peacekeepers,
blocked by the Islamic group on the Golan Heights under the control of
Damascus. The Filippino Defense Secretary...
08/29/2014SYRIA - UNITED NATIONS UN warns of 3 million Syrian refugees, "the world's largest humanitarian emergency" Almost half of the people forced to leave their homes since the conflict began in March 201. Lebanon is hosting the largest number of refugees, more than 1.1 million; other 6.5 million are internally displaced. The Islamic State has brought violence against civilians "to a new level" and hinders the distribution of aid.
08/28/2014IRAQ - ISLAM The barbaric cruelty of the Caliphate puts Islam to the test by Samir Khalil Samir The bloodthirsty and dramatic violence of the Islamic State has met with lukewarm condemnation but above all the silence of the Muslim world. The causes: an education system that rejects critical thought in preference of memorization; a religion that paralyzes reason and intelligence (as Muslims themselves state). The hideous cruelty of the former Isis goes against the Koran and the life of Muhammad. But are the humus in which the violence "in the name of God" appears justified. Islam needs to be profoundly renewed through a radical transformation of the educational method.
08/26/2014IRAQ - SYRIA - UNITED STATES Damascus ready to collaborate with US and UN to stop Islamic State The United Nations reports that after seizing Mosul militants killed hundreds of Shia inmates from Badoush prison. In addition, they carried out targeted killings, forced conversions, kidnappings, human trafficking, enslavement and sexual violence.
08/25/2014SYRIA Syria, Islamic State win air base in battle causing hundreds of victim The jihadi militias have taken Taqba air base from Damascus, the last government stronghold in the province of Raqqa. More than 500 died in the battle. Gunfire and chants from the mosques hailed the Islamists victory in the city. Severed heads of Syrian soldiers on display in the main square to shouts of "Allah Akbar".
08/24/2014VATICAN Pope appeals for peace in Ukraine. Peter's blind faith and hearts of "rock" or "sand" At the Angelus, Pope Francis recalls situation of conflict that create "so much suffering among the civilian population". A bishop writes a letter to the pope, "describing this pain." As for Peter, Jesus expects a "reliable", faith on which to build the Church. "What is your faith like? We should all find the answer in our hearts. What does the Lord find in our hearts? A stable heart like stone, or a heart like sand, that is incredulous, doubtful, suspicious?". He makes the pilgrims repeat Peter's profession three times: "You are Christ, the Son of the living God."
08/21/2014IRAQ - SYRIA - UNITED STATES James Foley, a journalist who had to make "sense" of war Born into a Catholic family, he came late to journalism after a career teaching inner-city kids. He was drawn to reporting in war-torn countries because of his brother, a member of the US Air Force, and felt he had to be there to understand the big issues. During his captivity in Libya in 2011, he prayed and recited the rosary.
08/20/2014VATICAN Pope asks Church to unite in prayer for persecuted Christians and minorities worldwide, particularly in Iraq The trip to Korea "can be condensed into three words: memory, hope, witness." "In a country where ancient Asian cultures and the perennial newness of the Gospel meet" there is "a young and dynamic church ", "founded on faith, on mission and the martyrdom of the lay faithful". The meeting with managers and players of his favorite soccer team, San Lorenzo, winners of the Copa Libertadores. Pope’s gratitude "for prayers and condolences for what happened in my family."
08/20/2014IRAQ - SYRIA - UNITED STATES Islamists behead US reporter abducted in Syria in response to Obama’s airstrikes Islamic State militia release a video of the execution of journalist James Foley, abducted in November 2012. The video, titled "Message to America" is authentic and announces the killing of a second hostage if military operations are not halted. The Jihadist addresses President Obama and speaks with a British accent.
08/18/2014VATICAN For pope, in Iraq "It is lawful" to halt an "unjust aggressor", but the decision belongs to the UN During the flight that brought him back to Rome, Francis spoke of his "respect" for the Chinese people, reiterating the importance of the Letter by Pope Benedict XVI. "If I felt I could not go on, I would resign," he said. As preparations for the encyclical on safeguarding creation continue, the pope plans future trips, including one to Albania, which has "important reasons".