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» 11/17/2007
TURKEY
Halki’s Chapel of the Transfiguration left in ruins
Forest guards began demolition work on the chapel without warning, Only the immediate protest of the prior of Haliki and Metropolitan Meliton avoided its total destruction. A Church in Kadikoy, ancient Calcedonia is also targeted by vandals.

Istanbul (AsiaNews) –A XVII century chapel dedicated to Our Lord’s Transfiguration, which lies in front of the Haliki School of Theology, was almost completely destroyed yesterday by Forest Guards.  The Church had been recently restored with the permission of local authorities.  Demolishers had begun tearing down the building without any prior warning, which is called for in such cases.

Only at the last minute was the total destruction of the chapel avoided: following protests by the prior of  Haliki School and Metropolitan Meliton, director of the Ecumenical Patriarchates office for legal affairs, the prefect of the Prince Islands stopped the Forest Guards. The building however was seriously damaged.

The Prior of Halki immediately brought to the attention of the Turkish authorities that these kinds of episodes will provoke international disapproval, including that of the European Union.  The Authorities response was stark: “Don’t dare to threaten us!”.

Shortly afterwards an “unknown” group smashed the windows of  Holy Trinity Church in Kadikoy, ancient Calcedonia.

Diplomatic and journalistic circles mummer that cases such as these are on the increase and are not casual either: they are part of a strategy adopted by powers in Turkey who are against the nations process of integration in the European Union and are testing the Governments will to protect religious minorities.(NT)

 


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See also
07/10/2008 TURKEY - EU
Court of Strasbourg recognises legal status of ecumenical patriarchate and condemns Turkey
by NAT da Polis
08/01/2007 TURKEY
Plot against the ecumenical Patriarch foiled
07/23/2009 TURKEY
Despite Europe's request, Ankara continues to waver on Religious Freedom
by NAT da Polis
01/08/2008 TURKEY
Bartholomew celebrates the rite of the blessing of the waters in the Golden Horn
01/21/2013 TURKEY
Ankara returns land confiscated from Halki Theological School
by NAT da Polis

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CHINA - VATICAN
Wenzhou bishop and priests slam government's campaign against crosses and churches in Zhejiang
by Eugenia ZhangFor Mgr Vincent Zhu Weifang, from the official Church, the campaign of destruction is increasing social instability. It is real persecution against the Christian faith. The bishop apologises for failing to intervene sooner. He was hoping that the campaign would end quickly. Catholics and Protestants suffer injuries as they attempt to defend their sacred buildings. For priests in Wenzhou, the campaign is unfair and touches buildings that have all the right papers. Such "stupid acts" by the government are undermining social harmony.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
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