25 March 2017
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  • 24/03/2017 - VATICAN - EU

    Francis spoke to the heads of state and government of the 27 EU member states on the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome. He told them that the Old Continent is a reality based on the centrality of man, effective solidarity, openness to the world, the pursuit of peace and development, and overture to the future. He also talked about "serious migration crisis" and the populism that is the "fruit of an egotism".




    24/03/2017 - VATICAN - GREAT BRITAIN - ISLAM

    London attack: The Pope's pain and that of a young Muslim


    Pope Francis expresses "prayer and solidarity" for the victims killed in Westminster. A young Muslim  apologizes to the victims because terrorists used his religion to cause such violence. Islam "has been taken hostage." Police release the name of the dead attacker: Khalid Massoud, 52, born in Britain. Perhaps he is of Pakistani or Afghan origin. The Islamic State claims him as "one of our soldiers."


    24/03/2017 - RUSSIA

    Optimists, pessimists, and apocalyptics look at Russia on the 100th anniversary of the Revolution

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    The commemoration of the centenary of the Russian Revolution of 1917 has begun. A major historical revision is underway. Our post-globalisation times resemble 1917. The Moscow Patriarchate and Vladimir Putin are silent on the matter.


    24/03/2017 - VIETNAM

    Hanoi arrests two bloggers and activists for online "propaganda against the State”


    24 year old Phan Kim Khanh and Bui Hieu Vo 51 year old are behind bars. Both accused of posting "malicious and prefabricated content ", with the aim of "spreading propaganda contrary" to the principles of the Republic. Today in Vietnam there are at least 84 prisoners of conscience, including bloggers, unionists, politicians and religious leaders. 


    24/03/2017 - NORTH KOREA

    Women and children are the main victims of North Korea’s humanitarian emergency


    About 27.9 per cent of North Korean children under five suffer from chronic malnutrition, 4 per cent from acute malnutrition. About 23.3 per cent of women in reproductive age are also malnourished. About 31.2 per cent of pregnant women are anemic and 5 per cent of children are born underweight. Malnutrition is aggravated by poor health care and the lack of running water, sanitation and hygiene services. “The undernourishment of the people of North Korea is a very serious situation,” expert tells AsiaNews. “A whole generation has stunted growth.”


    24/03/2017 - EMIRATES

    Emirates Airlines offers new service to offset ban on electronic devices in Mideast flights


    The US and the UK crack down on in-flight devices that might contain hidden explosives. Experts doubt about its effectiveness. "Let us entertain you" is Emirates Airlines alternative.


    24/03/2017 - INDIA

    Card. Alencherry: The beatification of Sister Rani Maria is a blessing for the Church in India


    The nun was killed in 1995 with 54 stab wounds. Her assassin  is a radical Hindu fomented by village leaders, who wanted to stop her missionary activity in favor of the tribal poor. Today he repented because of the love of the Franciscan family, who forgave and accepted him. Sister Rani is a "martyr".


    24/03/2017 - CHINA

    A "green necklace" of trees against air pollution in Beijing


    Hebei Province plans to use wetlands around the capital. The latter however suffers from water shortages. Beijing’s pollution crisis could be tackled by closing a significant number of steel factories in the region, but powerful interests and state enterprises have opposed such a move.


    24/03/2017 - IRAQ

    Mosul: fleeing parents forced to "sedate" their children


    The militiamen punish those who flee with death, and bind women leaving them out in the cold. The families fleeing at night and are forced to sedate their children or tape their mouths to stop their cries and spare them the horrors of war.


    23/03/2017 - THAILAND

    Bangkok wants a new “clean” abbot for the Phra Dhammakaya temple


    The current abbot has been accused of embezzlement and illegal construction. The authorities have tried repeatedly to arrest him, but without success. The National Office of Buddhism wants an outsider picked as the temple’s new spiritual guide.


    23/03/2017 - PALESTINE – ISRAEL

    As peace is ever remote, more Palestinians in Jerusalem apply for Israeli citizenship


    More than a thousand families applied for Israeli citizenship in 2016, up from 69 in 2003. However, red tape is an obstacle and more than half of all applications are rejected. Israel’s hold over the city is getting stronger with more settlements. Behind the trend is a desire to lead a normal life and avoid the fear of losing residency rights.


    23/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: if you do not listen to the Word of God, you end up confusing God with the devil


    "When a people, a community, even a Christian community, a parish, a diocese, close their ears and become deaf to the Word of the Lord, they look for other voices, other lords, and end up with the idols, idols of the world, the worldliness, that society offers them. They walk away from the living God. "


    23/03/2017 - JAPAN

    In Japan, where hope in the future is rare, 30,000 people took their life each year for 12 years

    by mons. Isao Kikuchi

    Between 1998 and 2010, more than 30,000 people were driven to take their own life. According to recent government research, only 20 per cent of suicides were committed for economic reasons. Sixty per cent were due to physical health and depression.


    23/03/2017 - BANGLADESH

    About 82 per cent of militants radicalised on social media in Bangladesh

    by Sumon Corraya

    The result is based on a survey of 250 jailed militants by the Bangladesh police presented at an international police seminar. Last year’s massacre in Dhaka showed how some Islamic preachers influence young people on the Internet.


    23/03/2017 - INDONESIA

    Mgr Samuel Sidin Oton is the new Bishop of Sintang, West Kalimantan (photos)


    The ordination ceremony took place in Baning in the presence of more than 5,000 local Catholics. West Kalimantan Governor Cornelis and local top military officials were also present. Working for environmental protection made Mgr Sidin an environmental hero. The challenges of the Diocese of Sintang include its vast territory, deforestation and the loss of cultural values ​​among locals.


    23/03/2017 - ASIA - ISLAM - GREAT BRITAIN

    Indian Church praying for the victims of London attack. The sympathy of world leaders


    Cardinal Gracias expresses deep sorrow for an attack that caused a "senseless loss of life." And prays God grant "peace, strength and consolation." Sympathy and solidarity from international leaders. Iran asks to stop the sale of the "weapons to terrorist groups ". Erdogan expresses solidarity with the British, but launches a new attack on Europe.


    23/03/2017 - SOUTH KOREA

    Sewol disaster: ferry recovery begins


    The vessel capsized about 3 years ago because of overcrowding and poor maintenance. 304 people, mostly students who were participating in a trip, were killed. The operations will last eight days; the cost is $ 72 million.


    23/03/2017 - SYRIA - UN

    Geneva, fifth round of talks on Syria begin. Few hopes for peace


    Government delegates and opposition representatives present at the meeting. There will be no "direct" talks and positions appear more and more distant. Recent clashes in the capital have raised tensions. The UN special envoy on visit to Ankara, Riyadh and Moscow to mediate an agreement.


    23/03/2017 - BRITAIN - ISLAM

    'Islamic' attack in London, arrests in Birmingham


    Police: "It is Islamic terrorism." Five dead and 40 wounded in the attack near the Houses of Parliament. Theresa May: "The bomber was a lone wolf." The identity of the terrorists has not yet been revealed. The investigations focus on possible accomplices. Seven arrests overnight.


    22/03/2017 - HOLY LAND

    For Jerusalem Churches, restoration of the aedicule of the Holy Sepulchre is symbol of brotherhood and co-operation


    An ecumenical ceremony marked the reopening of the aedicule. Representatives of the Franciscan community, Greek Orthodox and Armenian Churches spoke at the event. Mgr Pizzaballa also spoke. Pope Francis donated money for the restoration of the Holy Sepulchre and the basilica in Bethlehem. Bartholomew I, Patriarch of Constantinople, expressed his gratitude.


    22/03/2017 - CHINA

    Religious activities by students and faculty closely controlled


    Through special groups, the United Front tightly monitors religious activities on campuses by Chinese and foreigners. Anyone caught engaged in religious activities is expelled or fired.


    22/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Protect water, a common good, also by enhancing the cultural and religious significance


    The Word of God "feeds a hope that concrete results in sharing in mutual service." "Our hope is not based on our own strength or means, but on the support of God and the faithfulness of His love, that is, on God's strength and consolation of God." "That of migrants is the biggest tragedy since the Second World War".


    22/03/2017 - NORTH KOREA

    Seven in ten North Koreans malnourished, UN agency says


    Some 18 million people, including 1.3 million children under five, are affected. Average daily food rations are around 300 grams, lower than UN recommendation of 600. UN agency calls for fresh international action.


    22/03/2017 - INDIA

    The Ganges is a "living being." Raghuvanshi: historic decision, pulls wool from eyes of Hindu nationalists


    The High Court of Uttarakhand equates the waters of the sacred river for Hindus to a human being. The goal is to reduce the pollution caused by industrialization and urbanization. Indian activist: "The Hindu radicals use pollution to come to power." The courts must also take action for Dalits who live on the river banks.


    22/03/2017 - JAPAN

    25% of Japanese people have considered suicide


    The numbers are growing. A sense of hopelessness seems to be spreading across the nation. Last year there were over 21 thousand suicides. The investigation conducted by the Ministry of Health. The questionnaire does not ask the "why" one decides to commit suicide.


    22/03/2017 - NEPAL

    Nepali Catholics call for peaceful participation in local elections

    by Christopher Sharma

    The first local elections in 19 years have raised great expectations but also generated a lot of tension. Madhesi parties are protesting, demanding changes to the constitution before the vote. Encouraged by victories in India, Nepal’s Hindu monarchists want to restore a Hindu monarchy. The government defends the country’s secular nature.


    22/03/2017 - BANGLADESH – MALAYSIA

    Thousands of Bangladeshi migrant workers in Malaysia send remittances home

    by Sumon Corraya

    About half a million migrants from the South Asian country live in Malaysia, many undocumented and working illegally. Those who find honest work are an "economic blessing" for their families. Uzzal Roy and Mohoshin Islam are two such migrants who made it.


    22/03/2017 - MIDDLE EAST - UNITED STATES

    Washington and London prohibit and tablets and pc on flights from Africa and the Middle East


    The measure will enter into force on 25 March and does not have a end date. Threats from the Yemeni al Qaeda cell behind the ban, ready for new attacks. Experts and analysts raise doubts about its real effectiveness.


    22/03/2017 - NORTH KOREA

    Pyongyang missile test fails


    It was launched from the east coast of the country. The missile exploded seconds after launch. The South Korean military is still trying to confirm details. US: "We continue to closely monitor the actions of North Korea."


    21/03/2017 - TURKEY – EUROPEAN UNION

    Europe and Turkish opposition worried by Erdogan's constitution and totalitarian threat

    by Luca Galantini

    The row between Berlin and Ankara gets worse after Erdogan’s Nazi comparison. The pro-government newspaper Güneş published a photo of a Hitler-like Merkel. Turkish authorities arrest a thousand Kurdish activists on the eve of Nowruz ahead of the 16 April poll. A scholar and academic offers his thoughts about the reform and its consequences.






    Editor's choices

    VATICAN
    Pope tells young people to remember the past, to have courage in the present and hope for the future



    The Message for the 32nd World Youth Day was issued today centred on “The ‘great things’ that the Almighty accomplished’.” In her meeting with Elizabeth, Mary becomes a model. The pontiff calls on young people to avoid being couch potatoes, safe and cosy, urges them to rediscover the relationship with seniors. The Church experience is not a flash mob. The future should be experienced in a constructive way, and “the institutions of marriage, consecrated life and priestly mission” should not be devalued.


    AFGHANISTAN
    Fr. Moretti: The Little Sisters of Jesus, for 60 years " Afghan among Afghans"



    They have lived for 60 years at the service of the needy. They remained in Kabul under Soviet occupation, the Taliban control and the NATO bombing. Respected by all, even by the Taliban. This February their experience will end, according to Fr. Moretti "an example for us all."


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