01 October 2016
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    01/10/2016 - GEORGIA - VATICAN

    In the Patriarchal Cathedral of Tbilisi, Francis says that “to bind up wounds, with a spirit of pure Christian fraternity”, “requires patience nurtured through trusting others and through humility, without fear and discouragement, but rather rejoicing in the certainty which Christian hope allows us to enjoy ".




    01/10/2016 - GEORGIA - VATICAN

    Pope: Small beloved flock of Georgia, receive the consolation of the Good Shepherd


    At Mass in Meskhi Stadium, Pope Francis points to the mothers and grandmothers, who transmitted the faith and consolation to their children. "There is, however, an underlying condition to receiving God’s consolation… to become little like children". "The Church is the house of consolation." An invitation to all Christians: "Receiving and bringing God’s consolation: this mission of the Church is urgent”.


    01/10/2016 - GEORGIA - VATICAN

    Pope in Georgia: there is a world war against marriage and "gender theory" is "the great enemy"


    Responding to questions from priests and seminarians, Francis speaks of marriage as "the most beautiful thing that God has created". "There is a great sin against ecumenism: proselytism. Never should we engage in proselytizing the Orthodox. "


    01/10/2016 - LAOS - CHINA

    Vientiane declares war on timber smugglers, but corruption rampant


    Total ban on timber exports: the country is unable to cover the domestic needs. In two decades, Chinese and Vietnamese smugglers have reduced the Laotian forests by almost half. Local truck driver: "With the closing of the largest customs, traffickers use other methods with the help of corrupt government". 


    01/10/2016 - IRAN

    Iran, religious leaders, intellectuals and activists against genetically modified products: They are dangerous


    In the Islamic Republic protests mount against the spread of genetically modified products. A campaign to protect the health of citizens; a "trade war" against the "colonial” supporters of GMO- Israel and the US. Last year, Tehran imported products amounting to $ 5.5 billion.


    01/10/2016 - INDIA

    India, Latin rite bishops publish Hindi translation of Amoris Laetitia


    The goal is to spread the teachings of the Apostolic Exhortation in civil society, particularly among families. The bishops have promoted discussions on the text at the national, regional and diocesan level. The next meetings will continue to have the family as the focal point.


    30/09/2016 - VATICAN - GEORGIA

    Pope in Georgia: a world "thirsty for peace," calls for "new momentum" in relations between Catholics and Orthodox


    Francis visits the Orthodox Patriarchate, which has distanced itself from groups who question the papal visit. "Let us allow the Lord Jesus to look upon us anew, let us once again experience the attraction of his call to leave everything that prevents us from proclaiming together his presence.”


    30/09/2016 - ISRAEL – PALESTINE

    Historic handshake between Netanyahu and Abbas at Peres funeral in Jerusalem


    World leaders attend funeral of the former Israeli president. Mahmud Abbas is in Israel for the first time since 2010, Hamas reacts negatively launching protest. Egypt and Jordan send representatives. Pope Francis expresses sadness over the death of a “man of peace”.

     


    30/09/2016 - INDIA

    Xaverian missionary goes from Goa to the Andamans to spread the joy of the Gospel

    by Santosh Digal

    Fr Pritam Toppo SFX has been working in the archipelago in the Bay of Bengal for years. He served three parishes and their congregations, providing educational and pastoral outreach. His experiences include an encounter of tribesmen armed with bows and arrows, and staying overnight in thatched bamboo huts with snakes hanging from the ceiling. Everyone – Hindus, Catholics, Muslims, animists – "participate with solidarity in all the joys and sorrow of each other.”


    30/09/2016 - VATICAN - GEORGIA

    Pope in Georgia: dialogue and discussion in a world of violent extremism


    Francis is in Tbilisi, the first leg of his visit to the Caucasus. "Far from being exploited as grounds for turning discord into conflict and conflict into interminable tragedy, distinctions along ethnic, linguistic, political or religious lines can and must be for everyone a source of mutual enrichment in favour of the common good".


    30/09/2016 - INDONESIA

    Six-month maternal leave in Sharia-ruled Aceh province


    Local authorities double maternal leave. Jakarta criticised the decision, claiming it violates national regulations. Provincial spokesman said the decision was taken to encourage breastfeeding and reduce malnutrition. Human rights advocates praise the measure.


    30/09/2016 - TIBET – CHINA

    In Tibet, the party’s “highest priority” is to stop the Dalai Lama


    “First, we must deepen the struggle against the Dalai Lama clique, make it the highest priority in carrying out our ethnic affairs, and the long-term mission of strengthening ethnic unity,” party boss Wu Yingjie told the Tibet Daily. The ultimate goal is to influence the recognition of Tibetan Buddhism’s next leader. Beijing’s phoney Panchen Lama is back in the limelight.


    30/09/2016 - BANGLADESH

    Mobile phones as mobile banking accounts for the needs of Bangladeshis

    by Sumon Corraya

    Between 2014 and 2015, money transfers grew by 53 per cent. Mobile phones have become the easiest way to send money to distant families. This type of transactions began five years ago. Today more than 30 million people (out of more than 150 million) have a mobile account.


    30/09/2016 - SYRIA - RUSSIA - UNITED STATES

    US-Russia talks on Syria at risk. Dozens of families flee east Aleppo


    Moscow (and Damascus) continue the bombing campaign on the eastern sector. Spokesman for the Kremlin: the United States "not constructive rhetoric." Kerry Washington responds: we are "on the verge" of breaking off negotiations. The testimonies of Aleppo families who have fled the area in the hands of the rebels. The Gulf countries are ready to provide new weapons to anti-government militias.


    30/09/2016 - NEPAL

    Pollution leading cause of death in Nepal

    by Christopher Sharma


    This is what emerges from the latest WHO report. With 9 thousand deaths per year, poor air quality is the more deadly than Maoist revolution of 10 years ago. At least 36 Nepalese every 100 die from respiratory problems. Local experts: "After the earthquake, the situation has worsened. Now it is public health emergency. "


    30/09/2016 - YEMEN - S. ARABIA

    Saudi-led coalition air strikes cause new civilian casualties in Yemen


    At least eight civilian casualties in two separate attacks in the province of Saada, controlled by the Houthi rebels. Hopes for humanitarian truce dashed. Saudi Arabia rejects peace plans that do not provide for the complete disarmament of the Shiite movement and UN rejects demand for an independent commission on human rights violations in Yemen.


     


    29/09/2016 - SYRIA – RUSSIA – UNITED STATES

    Syrian conflict: US-Russia tensions rise as Syrian troops launch offensive in Aleppo


    Kerry threatens to break relations if Russia does not stop attacks. Moscow accuses Washington of promoting a "policy of threats and blackmail". A think tank close to the Kremlin calls for Moscow to distance itself from Damascus. In Aleppo, Syrian forces seize a rebel-held area. Militias use civilians as human shields.


    29/09/2016 - UNITED STATES – SAUDI ARABIA

    Congress overrides presidential veto on 9/11 bill, a step Obama calls a grave mistake


    The House of Representatives voted 348-77, the Senate 97-1, overruling Obama for the first time in his eight-year presidency. Relatives of 9/11 victims can sue Saudi Arabia. White House spokesman describes the vote as “embarrassing”. For CIA director, “the bill carries "grave implications" for national security.


    29/09/2016 - IRAQ

    Chaldean Synod bears witness to Christ with love and hope amid war and violence


    In the Jubilee Year of Mercy, Chaldean bishops reiterate the importance of evangelisation. Their goals include an enhanced role for the laity, deacons and married priests. Rebel priests and monks are ordered to return to their original diocese. The prelates prayed for Aleppo and Syria.


    29/09/2016 - INDIA

    India opts for first come, first served basis for 50 hard-to-place children

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    Would-be adoptive couples received a message asking them to “reserve” children online. The scheme is designed to help placement of disabled or older children whom no one wants. For the president of the Family Commission of the Bishops' Conference, “This is a pure commodification of babies”.


    29/09/2016 - THAILAND

    As Thailand’s economy sputters, anger against immigrants grows


    Police arrested hundreds of illegal workers this month. They face up to five years in prison, fines or deportation. "They should be doing the jobs that Thais don't want to do like work as house cleaners,” immigration police chief says. Thailand’s economy is expected to grow 3 per cent this year, a far cry from the 7 per cent of the 1990s. At least 3 million foreign workers are in the country.


    29/09/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: Day of Social Communications, "Fear not, for I am with you"


    The theme for the next Day is an invitation to tell the story of the world and the stories of the men and women, based on the logic of 'good news' that reminds us that God never gives up being the Father, in any situation and with respect to every human being. Let us learn to communicate confidence and hope for history.


    29/09/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: the logic of weapons and oppression, dark interests and violence continue to devastate Syria and Iraq


    If we have "the impression of being wrapped in a spiral of arrogance and inertia from which there seems to be no escape" it is the experience of the evil that is in man and in history. Francis receives the members of the Catholic charitable agencies operating in Syria and Iraq gathered for their fifth meeting organized by Cor Unum.

     


    29/09/2016 - HONG KONG - CHINA

    Card. Zen to Umbrellas Movement: The Church must denounce injustice. Undeterred

    by Lucia Leung

    A Mass in front of Hong Kong parliament to commemorate the pro-democracy demonstrations two years ago. In the city and in particular in Admiralty (where hundreds of thousands of people gathered) another moment with Benny Tai. All demonstrations were conducted at 6 pm, when two years ago the police first launched tear gas. Hopes for the future.

     


    29/09/2016 - INDIA

    India, one year after lynching beef still source of controversy


    The case of the murder of Mohammad Akhlaq has shocked the public and prompted intellectuals and critics of religious nationalism to act. Writers have returned prestigious awards; students demonstrated at universities. Meanwhile, ‘cow protection vigilante groups’ refine their techniques.

     


    29/09/2016 - SINGAPORE

    Singapore, 17 year old blogger jailed for insulting Islam and Christianity


    Amos Yee was already jailed in 2015 for criticizing the "founder" of the city-state, Lee Kuan Yew, a few hours after his death. He will serve six weeks in prison because his actions "may generate social unrest". Human Rights lawyers accuse the government of violating freedom of expression.

     


    28/09/2016 - ISRAEL – PALESTINE

    Peres was a complex personality who believed in peace, instrumental to Israel's security


    Political and religious leaders in Israel and Palestine remember the late statesman. For Mgr Pizzaballa, he realised the “value of the Christian presence" at the local and international levels. Bernard Sabella stressed the lights and shadows of a clever diplomat who “was not successful." Rabbi Milgram noted that he was “obsessed with security."


    28/09/2016 - INDIA – ITALY

    Indian Supreme Court says Massimiliano Latorre can stay in Italy until the end of arbitration


    The recent decision grants the Italian marine, already in Italy for health reasons, the same conditions as Salvatore Girone who returned to Italy after four years.


    28/09/2016 - VIETNAM

    Formosa Plastics Group pollutes river after polluting sea

    by Nguyen Hung

    Government authorises plant to dump effluent into Quyên River, which provides a livelihood to tens of thousands of people. For days, residents have demonstrated in a peaceful manner to stop the decision. Redemptorist Fr Đặng Hữu Nam has taken thousands of families, Catholic and non-Catholics, to sign a petition against the plant.


    28/09/2016 - BANGLADESH

    Bangladeshi writer Haq, a critic of fundamentalism, dies

    by Sumon Corraya

    Syed Shamsul Haq, who died aged 81, was one of the country’s most prolific and brilliant writers. He had been suffering from lung cancer for some time. He was the youngest recipient of the Bangla Academy Award, Bangladesh’s highest literary award. Christians remember him as "a teacher and guide."






    Editor's choices

    ASIANEWS SYMPOSIUM
    Mother Teresa, Mercy for Asia and for the world (VIDEO)



    We publish the video recordings of the presentations made at the international symposium organised by AsiaNews on 2 September. In order of appearance: Fr Ferruccio Brambillasca, PIME Superior General; Card Fernando Filoni, Prefect of the Congregation of Propaganda Fide; Sr Mary Prema, Superior General of the Missionaries of Charity; Father Brian Kolodiejchuk, postulator of the Cause of Mother Teresa; Card Oswald Gracias, archbishop of Mumbai; Fr John A. Worthley, on the influence of Mother Teresa in China; a witness to the influence of Mother Teresa in the Islamic world; and Mgr Paul Hinder, Apostolic Vicar of Southern Arabia.


    CHINA-VATICAN
    Beijing issues new, harsh draft regulations on religious activities

    Bernardo Cervellera

    Fines of up to 200 thousand yuan (27 thousand euro) for "illegal religious activities" by Catholic or other members of underground communities. "Illegal activities" include "dependence from abroad" (such as the relationship with the Vatican). The regulations preach non-discrimination, but party members are forbidden to practice their religion, even in private. Strict control of buildings, statues, crosses. Clampdown on the internet. It could be the end of the underground community.
     


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